What is in your cupboard, all the time especially if you have kids or for that matter adults who gorge fried snacks and generally love to munch on home made snacks ... yes, it is ketchup. I still remember the "Kissan Ketchcup" during my school days and it was such a treat to have samosas and bajjis with gulgs of the red sauce. I often used to wonder how lovely it tasted..:))
I love it , love it , love it .... but after all the talk about MSG / excess sugar / salt / artificial flavourings and colourings etc , I became wary of having bottled preserved sides for snacks. Kids don't understand this, so we have to give way sometimes.
Hey...!!! wait, don't give up so fast... Whatever is available in the markets can be reproduced at home, if not 100% atleast the homemade ones come very close to the industrial production.
I can guarantee the satisfaction and joy that accompanies when something so simple and delicious is prepared at home is immeasurable, no matter what brand you buy in the stores. The satisfaction doubles when your little one gives you the thumbs up with your experiment.
You have to believe me when I say that I have stopped buying ketchup or for that matter chocolate spread from the shops... I make my own. After all you are feeding your little one who deserves the best and when it is homemade, you know what goes into the making of the sauce.
The internet is a blessing in disguise as when you enter some title something or the other related to the title pops open. So my search for tomato ketchup recipe led me here. It sounds very simple and easy. There are few other recipes but the amount of vinegar and sugar was not appealing to me.
I was skeptical at first but you have to try it to know wether it works or not. I did try and it was good, so I kept the recipe as it is except for adding a few and reducing the amount of vinegar. The spices gives an special flavour and my Indian palette demands flavour in everything I eat.
All the ingredients are fresh and easily available everywhere. It makes wonderful edible gift that would definitely amaze your friends. When everyone else are gifting cakes / cookies/ flowers etc I can guarantee that you can make your stand when you hand them a bottle of homemade ketchup. This comes very handy when you hold festive parties or just to accompany your evening snacks..:)
For the recipe:
Ripe plum tomatoes :2 kgs.
Red onions: 2 medium.
Whole garlic pods: 3.
Fresh ginger: 1 inch piece [optional]
Cumin seeds: 1 tsp [optional]
Mace: a small piece.
Chilli flakes: 1 1/2 tsp.
Bay leaves: 2.
Crushed pepper corns: 1 tsp.
Red wine vinegar: 100mls.
Water: 100 mls.
Light brown sugar: 3 tbsp.
1.Roughly chop the onions, tomatoes and garlic pods. Put them in a heavy bottomed deep pan with the water and chilli flakes. Place the pan on medium slim flame.
2.Cover and cook for atleast 45 minutes stirring occasionally until the veggies have turned into a pulp.
3.After 45-50 minutes remove the pan from flame and let the contents cool for 10-15 minutes.
4.Whiz the contents using a hand blender or a mixie. Pass the blended contents through a nylon sieve.
5.Rub the pulp until you have extracted all the pulp leaving behind the skin and seeds of the tomatoes.
6.Meanwhile put all the other ingredients except the sugar in another sauce pan and place the pan on slim flame for 10minutes.
7.After 10minutes remove the pan from the flame and set it aside for the flavours to infuse.
8.Place a clean pan on medium slim flame. Add the extracted pulp and sugar. Filter the vinegar and add it to the pulp.
9.Mix well and let the contents thicken to ketchup consistency which will take around 15-20 minutes.
10. Remove from flame and transfer to sterilised bottles. Close the lids and let the contents cool completely.
Tie some labels around the lids with "Festive Wishes" and make this season even more festive....
The ketchup keeps well in the refrigerator for a couple of months. Make sure that the bottles are well sterilised and clean.
You can add more sugar if you want more sweetness to the ketchup. The given amount imparts a very mild sweetness.
All the ingredients can be altered according to your taste.
You can try the same recipe with green /yellow or orange tomatoes.
Sending this to Lets Cook Edible Gifts for Christmas by Nayna, Know Your Sweetness - Brown Sugar by Kirthi and Jagruti, Merry Christmas Celebrations by Sheelu.
Scribbled by Reva.