Last weekend we had some friends coming over for a grilling session. I wanted something simple, that was a kid-friendly meal, where there was the chance for the adults to catch up. We opted for burgers and fries; one cannot go wrong with either. A couple of hours before our friends arrived, I panicked. I didn’t have any ketchup for the fries. After scouring the internet, and rummaging around the cupboards, I pulled together the ingredients I thought would make a great homemade ketchup recipe. It worked perfectly, and now I may never buy it again.
I am sure most of you are wondering why I just didn’t run to the market or why I just did not have any at home. Unfortunately, where we live there isn’t a market close by, and it involves driving 10 minutes and then waiting in line for another 10 – 15 minutes, by the end, it could take upward of 30 minutes on a good day. As well I typically do not buy condiments as I find them a bit sugary. And, if I am going, to be honest, I kind of like the challenge of trying to make something on my own.
There are many recipes out there for versions of ketchup or catsup as I came to find it is called in our Southern States. The recipe that stood out the most to me was one written by Jamie Oliver, and even though I did not have all the “right” ingredients, I figured what the hay and improvised a bit.
Jamie’s recipe calls for using fresh, as well as canned tomatoes. I didn’t have any fresh tomatoes on hand but did have canned Italian plum tomatoes as well as paste. Perfect.
As well his recipe called for using celery and fennel. You guessed it! I didn’t have either on hand, so I just did not fret, and went with what I had. As well I cut the measurements down quite a bit as I was not prepared to can the leftovers for future use. The ketchup came out thick, and flavorful. Slightly sweet, and slightly smokey (thank you chipotle pepper). Perfect for a big batch of crispy fries, or to smoother a burger with.
Recipe: Homemade Ketchup
1 small yellow onion, cut into quarters
3 garlic cloves
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 teaspoon coriander seeds
1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
1/2 teaspoon chipotle powder
28 ounce can of Italian plum tomatoes with juices
4 tablespoons tomato paste
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup red wine vinegar
Place the olive oil in a large saucepan.
Heat over medium heat.
Add the onion and garlic, stir and cook for 3 minutes.
Add the spices, stir and cook over very low heat for 10 minutes.
Add the tomatoes, paste, and water into the saucepan. Bring to a boil, and then simmer until reduced by half. This will take about 20 minutes.
Add the brown sugar and vinegar.
Stir, and cook over very low heat for 10 minutes.
Let cool for 10 minutes, then run through a food processor.
Return to the saucepan.
Season to taste with salt.
Gently reheat over low heat for 8 minutes.
Bottle into sterilized bottles, and place in the refrigerator until needed. Or immediately use after chilling for a bit.