I think I may have alluded to this before, but I tend to have some issues. Canning issues, to be more specific, or at the very least the only issues I want to talk about today are canning related. I can’t seem to stop myself. I don’t know what it is, but man!, I love putting things in shiny jars.

I also tend to look at lots, and lots… and lots, of cookbooks. This just leads to more canning somehow. I can’t explain it. It is awesome, and awful at the same time – LOL! On the upside, some of this stuff is so beautiful you just wouldn’t believe it. The photos (at least with my limited skills) just don’t do it justice. This recipe for Passata came from The River Cottage Preserves cookbook. I turned the passata (roasted tomatoes) into ketchup, but I was honestly tempted to simply eat the whole damn thing right off the pan. It was gorgeous and the smell was so divine that I had to exercise some serious restraint. OK, I admit it. I actually ate a couple of forkfuls. I couldn’t help myself! I am only human after all.

The final ketchup is delightful. I am not sure that I will ever be able to eat store bought ketchup again. That is the downside to making such wonderful food: it spoils you for everything else. Curse you passata!!

Heirloom Tomato Passata from The River Cottage
4.5 lbs. ripe tomatoes
7 oz. shallots, peeled and thinly sliced
4 cloves garlic, peeled and thinly sliced
A few sprigs of rosemary, thyme, basil and/or oregano
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1 tsp. granulated sugar
1/4 c. olive oil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Cut the tomatoes in half and place them cut side up, in a single layer in a large roasting pan. Scatter the shallots, garlic, herbs, salt, pepper, sugar and oil over the top. Roast for about an hour, until the veggies are well softened. Remove from the oven and puree with a food mill.

Allow to cool for ketchup or pour immediately into sterilized jars. Process in a hot water bath for 25 minutes.

Heirloom Tomato Ketchup
4 1/2 cups of processed passata (I used the whole batch)
7 T. cider vinegar
1/4 c. lemon juice
1 heaping tsp. celery salt
1 heaping tsp. dry mustard
1 heaping tsp. ground ginger
1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1/4 tsp. ground cloves
1/2 c. light brown sugar

Put the passata into a heavy pan with the vinegar, lemon juice and spices. Bring to a simmer and then add the sugar. Stir until dissolved, then continue to simmer, stirring occasionally, for 30 minutes, until the sauce has reduced but is still pourable.

Pour immediately into warm, sterilized jars. Seal immediately with vinegar-proof lids. Store in a cool dry place and use within 4 months. Refrigerate after opening.

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  1. We have GOT to do this one again – but skip the ketchup part. Or do a 50/50 split or something.

    But if we weren’t making it for ketchup, how good do you think it’d be without the brown sugar? Or with just a little? I can’t help but notice that if we wanted a really good savory dish, we could just substitute the sugar, cider vinegar & lemon with balsamic vinegar.

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