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Have a go…make your own ketchup!

by Sarah Alcock

Jams, chutneys, breads - making your own is trendier than wearing trainers to work. Now it's time to take kitchen DIY to the next level. You can keep your tomato ketchup, Heinz, because we're making our own!

Spiced tomato ketchup

Don't be put off by how long it takes to cook – you barely have to do anything to prep. If you fancy a mildly spiced ketchup, use 2 chillies, or if you'd like a more fiery version, use 4.

Makes 700g-800g V

Prep 15 mins Total time 3 hrs 30 mins, plus overnight salting
Get ahead: Once cooled, store in a cool dark place. The ketchup will keep for several months. Once opened, store it in the fridge.

  • 2.7kg ripe tomatoes, thickly sliced
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 fat garlic clove, chopped
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tbsp black peppercorns
  • 10g peeled ginger, chopped
  • 2 cloves
  • 2-4 bird eye chillies, chopped (optional, to taste)
  • 1 tsp ground allspice
  • 1 tsp ground mace
  • 225g granulated sugar
  • 250ml white wine vinegar

1. Put the tomato slices in a large, non-metallic dish, sprinkling evenly with 1 teaspoon of salt. Cover and leave overnight.


2. Tip the tomatoes, along with all the liquid, into a large pan with a lid. Add the onion, garlic and bay leaf. Tie the peppercorns, ginger, cloves, chillies (if using), allspice and mace in a small square of muslin.


3. Add the muslin bag to the mixture. Cover and bring to the boil. Then uncover and simmer over a medium-low heat for 3 hours, stirring regularly, until the mixture forms a thick mush and tastes rich and tomatoey.


4. Remove the spice bag and bay leaf and leave the ketchup to cool for 20 minutes.

5. Push the mixture through a sieve, in batches, into a large clean saucepan – if you whiz the mixture first in a blender it will make the sieving much quicker. Discard any skin and seeds that are left in the sieve.


6. Preheat the oven to 140°C, fan 120°C, gas 1. Add the sugar and vinegar to the pan, and give everything a stir.


7. Bring the ketchup to the boil, then simmer it, stirring regularly, for 25-30 minutes or until the mixture is the consistency of thick double cream.

8. Towards the end of the cooking time, sterilise your bottles (or jars) by washing them in hot soapy water, then rinsing and placing them (and any lids) in the oven for 15 minutes.

9. Using a funnel, pour the hot ketchup into the warm bottles, so that it comes to just under 2.5cm from the top. Add tight-fitting lids and leave to cool.


Per tbsp: 32cals; 0g fat (0g sat fat); 1g protein; 1g fibre; 7g carbs; 7g total sugars; 0g salt

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