Sunday, February 9, 2020

Spiced Tomato Preserves

My mother used to make spiced tomato preserves in the summer, when the garden was overflowing with ripe, red tomatoes. The preserves were tangy and sweet, with hints of cinnamon and cloves. My mother no longer has the recipe, and I can't find it on the internet. I've looked everywhere. (You'd be surprised what falls between the internet's couch cushions....)

So I am making up a recipe based on my memories and the several recipes I've found that seem close, but not quite.

This tastes just like I remember.

Spiced Tomato Preserves
3 cups granulated cane sugar
3 pounds tomatoes, peeled, cored, and chopped
1 lemon, sliced fine, then chopped coarsely
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1/4 tsp. ground cloves
1.75 ounces powdered pectin

Prepare 1/2 pint canning jars and lids according to directions.

Measure out your granulated sugar and set aside.

Put the chopped tomatoes in saucepan and heat slowly to a simmer, stirring constantly to prevent burning. Cover and simmer 10 minutes.

Add the lemon, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, and pectin. Stir well.

Bring to a boil over high heat, stirring constantly.

Add sugar all at once. Stir constantly. When the mixture comes to a boil that can't be stirred down, boil hard for one minute. (Yes, still stirring constantly. Black, burnt flakes from the bottom of the pot will ruin your beautiful preserves.)

Remove from heat. 

Ladle hot jam into hot jars, leaving 1/4" head space. Put the lids on and place in water bath. Process for 10 minutes (15 for altitude adjustment).

This made 4 1/2 pint jars.

My favorite way to eat tomato preserves is on top of a cracker with some goat cheese or brie.