So we’re at the point of the year where I’ve made so many batches of tomato sauce that I’m actively searching for other things to do with all my tomatoes! I could keep making sauce, but I’m kind of bored with that right now (I type as I’m sitting here thinking I’ll make a batch of sauce tonight).
Anyway, I was pretty sure I remembered seeing tomato jam in my Little House Cookbook as a kid. I don’t know if any of you had that cookbook, but it was my very first one. I had devoured all of the Little House books by the end of the first grade and my Nana bought me the Little House cookbook for Christmas. I was immediately in love. I’d never done any from-scratch cooking at that point, so I was amazed that such boring ingredients combined to make delicious food. Remember, you’re about 6 or 7 in the first grade so it’s not like I knew that flour was a major component of cake. And not to out my mother as a cake mix user, but I thought cake was always the result of a cake mix. I spent the next few years working my way through the recipes, pretty much concentrating on baking. I made the blackberry pie after an afternoon of berry picking in the field out back. And I even entered the apple pie into a kids’ baking contest. (I didn’t win. Apparently people don’t believe that a 9-year-old can make a pie by herself. The winning entrant crumbled up Oreos, added gummy worms, and called it Dirt Cake – not that I was so bitter that I remember this 25 years later . . . )
But as much as I loved those recipes, 7-year-old me had no interest in tomato jam. Now that I’m kind of an adult, I figured it was time to give it a try! The night I went to make this jam, I was definitely too lazy to go through boxes at my parents’ house to find my Little House Cookbook, but a quick Google turned up this post with the recipe. I made one adjustment, adding the basil, but otherwise it’s the same as on the healthy-delicous blog. Now that I’m typing this up, I took a look at that blog and it has some great-looking recipes. You should also go there!
I haven’t tried this jam yet. It is supposed to taste better if you let it sit for a couple weeks, but I’m getting impatient! I want to try it on a gooey grilled cheese. Or maybe as part of a cheese plate at my next barbecue. Or little dollops of it on top of cream-cheese-spread crackers. Okay, I’m making myself hungry!
- 2 pounds of tomatoes (I used a mixture of Black Krim, yellow pear, and San Marzano)
- 1 1/2 cups brown sugar
- juice of 1 lemon
- 1 teaspoon salt
- Generous handful of basil, chopped finely
First, you need to puree the tomatoes (skin-on) in a blender or food processor. Transfer to a saucepan.
Add the sugar, lemon juice, and salt.
Once the jam was done, I spooned it into some sterilized jars. I used tiny little jars because I like to make gifts of jam samplers at Christmas time. I could see tomato jam, pepper jelly, and candied jalapenos making a nice trio. Once the jars were full (just five tiny jars out of 2 pounds of tomatoes!), I canned in a pressure cooker for ten minutes at 5 pounds pressure.