Dairy Free / Dressings & Marinades / Egg free / Fresh Produce / Goodness on the Side! / Preserving / Savory and Splendid! / Vegetables

Homemade Ketchup {for canning}

20130814-173103.jpgWe use a lot of ketchup in our house. I grew up eating it on everything. Ketchup on chicken…on baked potatoes…on potato chips…even on eggs. My grandpa even eats it on top of holubtsi, which are an Eastern European cabbage roll dish, that I grew up eating. {Hmmm, sometime I will have to make a post on that delicious dish.} Anyway, my family really, really likes the stuff.

This love of ketchup was, at times, a point of contention between my husband and I when we were first married. For instance: when I asked for ketchup so I could dip my steak in it. I thought his heart was going to stop. Apparently this was a no-no, and the Kansas-raised man that I had married was the first one to tell me! I have since learned that ketchup isn’t necessary on everything , especially if meats are seasoned properly. I admit that I still eat it on eggs though. Even the fresh farm eggs that our hens faithfully lay. Unless I have a fresh tomato to eat with eggs…that trumps ketchup any day! So whether you say or spell this versatile condiment k-e-t-c-h-u-p or c-a-t-s-u-p, here is a great homemade version for canning. I had an abundant supply of tomatoes to use, along with the time to whip up a big batch of this ketchup and I know my family will appreciate it this coming year! This recipe makes approximately 7 quarts, but can easily be halved to make 7 pints. I also let it cook overnight in a large roaster to allow the flavors to meld and the vegetables to get soft while I slept. If you try this let me know how you like it! -Shelley.

Homemade Ketchup {for canning}
*makes approximately 7 quarts

60 c tomato sauce
2 c chopped onion
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 t cayenne pepper
2 cinnamon sticks
2 1/4 c white or brown sugar
2 t black pepper
6 T canning salt
3 t ground allspice
1 1/2 t mustard seed
3 T celery seed
6 c apple cider vinegar

Start by placing tomato sauce in a large roaster on low heat {or a huge pot on the stove if you like}. Add chopped onions, garlic, cayenne pepper, cinnamon sticks, sugar, pepper, salt and allspice to the tomato sauce. Allow to cook until onions are soft, or all night in the roaster.

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In the meantime, place mustard seed and celery seed in the apple cider vinegar in a medium sauce pan. Allow to simmer for about 30 minutes to allow the flavors to be released from the seeds. Strain through a fine mesh strainer to remove the seeds. If some of the vinegar has evaporated, fill up again to the 6 cup mark. Set aside.
{Note: placing the seeds in a cheesecloth would have saved this straining part, but I couldn’t find any hence why I did it the way I did.}

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Once onions are soft, or after the roaster has cooked all night on low heat, remove cinnamon sticks and transfer mixture to a HUGE stock pot. Use an immersion blender to puree the ketchup mixture.

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Add the 6 cups of apple cider vinegar to the pot and bring ketchup mixture to a full boil over high heat, leaving uncovered. This allows the steam to escape and for the mixture to cook down and thicken up to become ketchup instead of something like an alphabet soup base {one of my daughters told me that is what it smelled like this morning when she woke up}. Be warned that this cooking down process can take quite a while. It probably took a good 3 hours for mine to reduce by half.

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Once it has cooked down to about half of the original amount, taste it to see if it needs more sugar, salt or seasoning. I also kept dabbing a bit on a plate to see the thickness of it. It was easier to see if it was actually ketchup-thick by placing on a plate. Allow to continue to cook down until desired thickness is achieved.

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This is what it looked like when I was ready to can it. Place the thickened ketchup in hot, sterilized jars leaving a 1″ head space at the top of the jar. Wipe the rims of the jars with a clean, hot, damp rag. Adjust 2-piece caps and tighten until *just* finger tight. Process in a hot water bath: pints 35 minutes and quarts 45 minutes.

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Once the jars have finished processing, carefully remove and place on a towel-lined surface. Cover with another towel and leave undisturbed until completely cool, usually 12-24 hours. Once cooled, check to make sure jars have sealed by gently pressing in the center of the lid to make sure it doesn’t pop back. If it hasn’t sealed, refrigerate and use. If the jars sealed, label and date the jars and store for later use.

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3 thoughts on “Homemade Ketchup {for canning}

  1. Pingback: Heirloom Tomato Basil Soup {for canning} |

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