I love a good ketchup. Not that mass-produced and overly sweetened kind, with no real complexity of flavor to enjoy. A few years back my mom and I made a batch of homemade ketchup that we learned through Jamie Oliver. It had lots of herbs and spices that set a new bar of ketchup experience. Ever since I’ve tried to get in a batch or two during the harvest season to store and use all year. This year, while out harvesting Autumnberries, I got the idea that their pulp would be the ideal replacement for tomatoes. Not just because it contains over 17 times more lycopene than tomatoes, but because it has a wonderful balance of sweet and tangy flavors and beautifully silky pulp. So I made up this recipe… Make sure to use fresh herbs—and don’t be afraid to add in some of your favorites like fresh oregano, winter savory, or wild analogs like bee balm or lemon balm. To yield your Autumnberry pulp: Cook down around 3-4 cups of autumberries in a small pan at medium heat until their juices start to release. Blend them with an emersion blender (or a blender) after they’ve simmered for around 5 minutes. Then run this pulp through a fine sieve or folly food mill and you’re good to go.
Herby Autumnberry Ketchup
What You Need:
2 cups Autumnberry Pulp
2 heaping tbsp fresh basil, chopped (or dry, if that’s all you’ve got)
1 tsp fennel seed
1 tsp fresh lemon thyme, chopped (or any other thyme you have growing)
1 tsp fresh fennel leaf, chopped
2 heaping tbsp chopped chives
1 large clove of garlic, chopped (or 2 small cloves)
1 small handful of gold raisins
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup brown sugar
3 tbsp olive oil s
alt and pepper to taste
- Rustle up two 8oz half pint canning jars and two clean, unused lids. Submerse these in a pot of water and bring it to a boil (to sterilize).
- In a medium pan, heat the olive oil and sauté the garlic and chives for 2 – 3 minutes.
- Toss in the fennel seed, stir the mixture and then sauté for another 2 minutes.
- Toss in the thyme, fennel leaf, basil, and gold raisins. Stir it again and let sauté for another 2 minutes.
- Pour in the autumnberry pulp, brown sugar, and apple cider vinegar. Add salt and pepper to your taste and stir it all together.
- Cook this on a medium heat for about 5 minutes—it will reach a steady, yet mild boil that will “set” the whole mixture together.
- Your jars should be nicely sterilized by this time. Remove them from the boiling water and slowly & carefully fill the jars with the hot ketchup. I fill mine all the way to the brim, top them with the sterilized lid, and then screw on the ring nice and tight.
- Let the jars sit until fully cooled down. Make sure that the lids “pop” and seal. Once they’ve cooled and sealed, labelt hem up and let mingle in the pantry for at least 6 weeks before you tap in. Luckily, you should have about a 1/4 cup of excess ketchup that won’t fit in the jars. Go ahead and make some homemade french fries or and enjoy it!