Wednesday, 13 March 2013

My Kids' Verdict on Homesteady Ketchup

Ketchup. Nine times out of ten, you'll find it on our dining table, in pride of place between our Imperial War Museum place-mats and mismatched crockery. Because I am miserly, I buy the cheapest one I can find at Asda. It compares favourably to Heinz and is popular with the children, but there's a whole lot of sugar in that 23p bottle. 

Mandi Ehman's recipe for tomato ketchup was the first thing I tried in Easy. Homemade. Homemade Pantry Staples for the Busy Modern Family ($3.99, available here) and it has encouraged me to look closer at my shopping basket and see if I can't create some of the sauces, seasonings and snacks myself, instead of buying them.



To make your own tomato ketchup (or "red paint" as my nan used to call it), you will need about an hour and the following ingredients: 

 2 tbsp olive oil

 4 small onions, chopped

 2 garlic cloves, peeled

 2 x 400g can tomatoes (I bought the posh Italian ones as they were on special offer). As you can see, I have had to label these - and the tomato puree - with PLEASE DO NOT USE stickers or they would have been sacrificed by the King before now.

 170g tomato puree

 2 tbsp sugar

 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar

 1 teaspoon sea salt

 pinch paprika



Mandi Ehman's Method:

From The Farm Blog HopIn a large saucepan, sauté onion in oil until golden. 

Add the remaining ingredients and bring to a boil.

Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, for 45-60 minutes, or leave on the top of the woodburner for an hour or two.

Puree in the pot with a stick blender. 

Transfer to a sterilized jar - I used an old tomato sauce bottle and an old jam jar - with a tight lid and store in the refrigerator or freezer, leaving about an inch of headspace in any jars that will go into the freezer.

Secundus' verdict: "It tastes like cold pasta sauce."

Prima's verdict: "Please may I have the normal tomato sauce?"

My verdict: I could get to like this Easy Homemade sauce, mainly because I know exactly what is in it, and I would swap it for the less healthy Smartprice ketchup, but it doesn't really taste the same. It looks good in the bottle and I am going to make my own "homesteady" label. 

The ketchup will last a month in the fridge and 6 months in the freezer. If we don't get through it in time, I can always transform it into pizza topping or pasta sauce. Worth doing and easy to make, but (as I expected) not a hit with my ketchup-loving kids. 

Find out more about the Easy Homemade e-book from the author herself: 






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