This recipe for homemade tomato ketchup is healthier, more flavourful and certainly worth every minute you spend making it. Fresh tomatoes, brown onions, red apples, apple cider vinegar, brown sugar and spices are all you need, to make a batch of your very own tasty ketchup.
Where does Ketchup come from?
We all know Ketchup is most popular in America but did you know it originated in China? it was derived from a fermented fish sauce which was primarily used to flavour boring dishes and was not served as a condiment. When the British discovered this sweet sour sauce, they tried to replicate it by adding their own touch.
The sauce eventually became a success when Henry J. Heinz developed a recipe made with fresh tomatoes and heaps of vinegar to prevent the sauce from spoiling. But unfortunately, the ketchup we know today, is full of sugar, loaded with preservatives. So, why not make your own instead?
What is tomato ketchup made of?
I'm not sure but I don't like to read what's in it at the back of a bottle. Corn syrup, citric acid and added flavours, don't sound natural to me and that's why I don't want these to be part of my diet. I know there are so many things that taste better with ketchup so let's just make our own!
The steps to making homemade tomato ketchup are straight forward. I added all the chopped ingredients to a large pan. Wrapped the whole spices in a muslin cloth (spice bag) so that it's easy to remove afterwards. I let everything cook in the pan for 2 hours with minimal stirring.
When cooked, I removed the spice bag before blending the mixture in a food processor. Once it had a sauce like consistency, I strained it through a sieve. The sauce then went back into the pan until it became nice, thick and sticky.
What goes in my homemade tomato ketchup?
All ingredients that go in my ketchup recipe, are very familiar and easily available to everyone. The hero of course are the Tomatoes. Fresh, ripe, dark red in colour are the best. You need brown onions, red apples and apple cider vinegar.
Furthermore you need to add spices for that distinct ketchup flavour. I used cloves, peppercorns, bay leaf, all spice, star anise and cayenne pepper.
There are many different ways to make ketchup but my recipe is jam packed with flavour! Give this recipe a go and i am pretty sure you will not go back to store-bought ketchup!
Tip: Store in a glass jar with a lid. It can last upto 3 months in the fridge...though i doubt you will have any left over for that long!
More recipes from our Chef's Pantry
In our chef's pantry we have a collection for recipes made from scratch, find some recipe ideas to try out next below:
Easy garlic and herb aioli perfect as a dip or as a salad dressing
White cabbage fermented and turned into Sauerkraut
Homemade garlic herb butter for steaks and more
This nordic mustard and dill sauce can be served with cooked prawns or cured salmon
Enjoy making those and let us know how you went with the tomato ketchup recipe!
Homemade Tomato Ketchup
- large pan
- glass jar
- 1 kg / 2.2 lb large ripe tomatoes
- 3 red apples
- 2 brown onions
- 150 ml apple cider vinegar
- 4 cloves
- 10 black peppercorns
- 1 star anise
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 pinch cayenne pepper
- 1 teaspoon all spice powder
- Cut the tomatoes in small chunks. Peel the onions and cut in dices. Peel and core the apples and cut in dices. Wrap the whole spices in a muslin cloth and crack gently with the back of a knife.
- Add all ingredients in a wide pan and place on stove on high heat. Once it starts boiling reduce the heat to medium and let simmer away for 1 ½ hours.
- By now the liquid should have cooked away. Remove the whole spices and mix in a food processor to a fine puree. Strain through a sieve and place back on the stove.
- Reduce the sauce further by constantly stirring. You want it to be thick and sticky. Store in the fridge for up to 3 months.