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Homemade Ketchup

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(Recipe ID: 714)

Preparation time: 6 hours minutes

Source: Vito De Carolis

Serious recipe for serious Ketchup lovers.  Perfect for gardeners with large summertime tomato harvests.


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  • 25 pounds Fresh Roma Tomatoes
  • 1 cup Onions, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon Coarse Sea Salt *
  • 1 cloves Garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon Fresh Ground Black Peppercorn *
  • 1/2 teaspoon Paprika
  • 1 cup Brown Sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon Powdered Black Mustard *

    Ferri suggested

  • 1/4 teaspoon Ground Cinnamon *

    Ferri suggested

  • 3 Tablespoons Celery Seeds
  • 3 cups Sherry Vinegar *


  1. Put the tomatoes, a few at a time in a large pot of boiling water for no more than 1 minute (30-45 seconds is usually enough).  Plunge them into a waiting bowl of ice water.  Then remove the skins off of the tomatoes.
  2. After you have peeled the skins off the tomatoes, cut the tomatoes in half.  Then squeeze each tomato and use your finger or a spoon to scoop and shake out most of the seeds.
  3. Toss the squeezed tomatoes into a colander or drainer.  This helps more of the water to drain off.  Note:  You may want to save the liquid.  If you pass through a sieve, screen or cheesecloth, you have fresh tomato juice; great to drink cold or use in cooking.
  4. Get jars sterilized in the dishwasher.  Be sure to let it go through the rinse cycle to get rid of any soap and lid.
  5. Put the lids into a pan of boiling water for at least several minutes to sterilize them.
  6. Put the tomatoes in a large pot to start simmering.  Into the pot of simmering tomatoes, add onion, coarse sea salt, garlic, pepper, paprika, sugar, black mustard and ground cinnamon.
  7. Onto a piece of cheesecloth (about 12 inches square) put celery seed  Tie the corners of the cloth together to make a little bag and put the bag into a small sauce pot with sherry vinegar.  Let it simmer for 30 minutes, (you may need to add more vinegar, so you finish with 3 cups of liquid), then discard the cheesecloth bag and set aside.
  8. Cook the tomatoes for about 20-30 minutes over medium heat to make them mushy enough to go through your food mill or sieve.  Run the cook tomato mixture through the food mill or sieve.  Discard the seeds and skins that remain in the sieve.
  9. Add the seasoned vinegar and cook down to thicken the mix.  Add the seasoned vinegar and cook down the mixture to thicken it.  You can do it on the stove over low - medium heat, stirring frequently.  Note:  You want it to get as thick as you like your ketchup, remembering that it will also thicken a little bit after you cool it.
  10. Fill the jars with the ketchup and put the lid and rings on.  Fill them to within 1/4 inch of the top, seat the lid and hand-tighten the ring around them.  Be sure the contact surfaces (top of the jar and underside of the ring) are clean to get a good seal.
  11. Put them in the canner and keep them covered with at least 1 inch of water.  Keep the water boiling.  Process the jars in a boiling water bath for 40 minutes.  Note: wrap each jar with kitchen towel to avoid breakage.
  12. Lift the jars out of the water and let them cool without touching or bumping them in a draft-free place overnight.
  13. Store in a dark and cool place.

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