If you have homegrown (or farmer’s market) tomatoes coming out of your ears, today is your lucky day! This recipe for tomato jam is so delicious, you’ll be spreading it on everything. Heck, I help myself to a spoonful every time I pass the fridge! Scrambled eggs, hot dogs, burgers, cheese & crackers, bruschetta … use your own imagination (or Pinterest) to figure it out. But beware, tomato jam goes down easy and when eaten in large quantities, results in a slight, albeit “so worth it,” sugar headache. I speak from experience.
I modified Mark Bittman’s recipe as listed in the NYTimes just a tad. He’s a brilliant cook so I have not changed his recipe to improve upon it. To be perfectly honest, the first time I made it, I did not have enough limes, so I improvised by adding balsamic vinegar for more acid. And I like a little more spice, as you’ll see. Finally, I more than doubled the recipe because those tomatoes cook down so much, you’ll be sorry if you start with too few tomatoes.
- 3-4 pounds ripe tomatoes, any variety, or a mixture.
- 2 cups sugar, or less if you don’t want it as sweet.
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
- 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 2 tablespoons fresh grated ginger or 1 – 1 1/2 tablespoons powdered
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1/2 teaspoon Thai chili paste
Core and chop all the tomatoes. You could even do a course chop in your food processor to save time. I used my Miracle Kitchen Plus which worked great!
Toss the chopped tomatoes and the rest of the ingredients in a heavy pan and bring mixture to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer, uncovered, for several hours.
You should be able to pull your spoon across the bottom of the pot and see the bottom. It will be thick like jam.
Cool and store in the refrigerator or freezer. I spoon it into small mason jars while it is still warm and screw the lid on tightly. As it cools, it sucks the lid in a bit for a tighter seal. This is not the same as canning (which you could totally do) so each jar lasts only a week or so in the fridge.
It makes a great gift for friends and neighbors if you are the sharing type!
One amazing way to use tomato jam is on a grilled cheese sandwich with fresh mozzarella and a slice or two of fresh tomato. Talk about delicious!
If you have a recipe for tomato jam or a great way to use it, please share below!