Goodbye Tomatoes: Jersey Heirloom Tomato Jam
I say it every year at this time.
I am sick of tomatoes.
I can't give them away anymore.
I am tired of picking them, and coming up with new tomato recipes for you and me.
Now the tomatoes that are left on the vine are mostly cracked and bruised, yet they still taste delicious.
You can usually buy the bruised and split ones at the farmer's market at the end of the day for $1. per lb., if you are not growing your own.
It's almost time to say goodbye to them at the MCG, but not until I have made a tomato jam.
You can call this a chutney if you like, cause it's sweet and spicy, but please don't call it a ketchup (or even worse: "catsup").
I added a homegrown red onion to this as well, and the results were amazing.
Delish with a nice sharp cheese, excellent with eggs, as well as a roast chicken sandwich.
It filled 3 Weck "100" size jars, so I gave 2 away.
Jersey Heirloom Tomato Jam:
5 lbs. of ripe heirloom tomatoes (I used the bruised and mushy ones, instead of tossing them), skins left on, cut into pieces
1 large red onion, cut into pieces
1 3/4 - 2 cups of brown sugar
2 tbsp of good balsamic vinegar
1 tbsp of mustard seeds
1 lemon, sliced thin, seeds removed
1 cinnamon stick
dried chili pepper flakes, to taste
1 tsp sea salt
1 tsp garam masala or a few whole cloves
a few sprigs of fresh thyme
In a heavy saucepan, bring all ingredients to a boil.
Turn down heat and simmer for about an hour, until the mixture cooks down and is getting nice and thick (it will get thicker once it cools).
Keep stirring the pot so the mixture doesn't stick.
Remove the cinnamon stick and the thyme sprigs (but leave lemon slices).
Let cool completely in the saucepan (about an hour) before ladling into jars.
You can sterilize the jars for long term storage, however, I am intimidated by the whole canning thing, so I just put them in my Weck jars and put them in the fridge. The jam/chutney will stay in the fridge for up to a month.
Goodbye gorgeous Jersey heirloom tomatoes, you are a pleasure to grow and even more of a pleasure to eat.
I will miss you all year long, but will look forward to next July and my first bite of you.