The recipe I am about to share with you may be the reason I have transformed into a total canning nerd overnight. Sure, my new obsession with canning isn’t all that surprising. I have a garden and need to figure out how to preserve some of its harvest. I also dabbled in canning last year when I was overwhelmed by my first crop from the fig tree. I’m crafty and I love to cook. I own a shop called Home Made. Clearly, this was bound to happen.
A few months ago, I had breakfast at The Red Store — Cape May Point’s General Store. Aside from feeling like you’re sipping on your coffee while hanging out in a magazine, they serve the most delicious bacon and egg sandwich with tomato marmalade on homemade brioche. This sandwich was the perfect combination of savory-sweet that I immediately added tomato marmalade to my canning wishlist. “Return often to The Red Store” was also added to my wishlist.
After my labor-intesive experience making tomato sauce during the hurricane last year, I wasn’t exactly thrilled about the idea of spending an entire day blanching, peeling and deseeding tomatoes. So, a major selling point for me trying this particular tomato jam recipe was that I could just dice up my tomatoes and throw ’em in a pot with a bunch of other stuff to simmer. Soon a divine cinnamony-ginger-clove smell escapes your pot, requiring you to constantly stir, stiff and then congratulate yourself for making such sweet smelling goodness.
is was lunch. Grilled cheese and tomato jam with a side of pickle. One of these pickles, actually. It might be messy but it sure was yummy. I have yet to try my tomato jam on a turkey burger or on one of these biscuits but I’m pretty confident that I won’t be disappointed.
And, if you make some tomato jam for yourself I’m pretty confident that you won’t be disappointed either.
From Marisa McClellan, the writer and canner behind Food in Jars blog and the author of Food in Jars: Preserving in Small Batches Year Round.
The yield on this recipe varies from about 3 – 5 pints, depending on the tomatoes and how much you cook it down.
5 pounds tomatoes, finely chopped
3 1/2 cups sugar
8 tablespoons lime juice
2 teaspoons freshly grated ginger
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1 tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon red chili flakes
Combine all ingredients in a large, non-reactive pot. Bring to a boil and then reduce temperature to a simmer. Stirring regularly, simmer the jam until it reduces to a sticky, jammy mess. This will take between 1 and 1 1/2 hours, depending on how high you keep your heat.
When the jam has cooked down sufficiently, remove from heat and fill jars, leaving 1/4 inch of head space. Wipe rims, apply lids and twist on rings. Process in a boiling water canner for 20 minutes.
When time is up, remove jars from water bath and allow them to cool. When jars are cool enough to handle, test seals. Store jars in a cool, dark place for up to one year.