Thursday, August 19, 2010

Cowboy Tomato Jam

Cowboy Tomato Jam
Ahhh, tomatoes. Is there a vegetable/fruit that tastes more like summer than a vine ripened tomato? On my Grandparent's farm, we kids would pick a tomato, lick the outside, then dip it into a palm full of Morton Salt. Then we'd take a slurpy bite out of the sun-heated tomato as if we were eating an apple. You would never want to do that to a winterized grocery store chain tomato, but there is nothing sweeter than a farm grown, garden grown, patio grown summer variety.
It's hard to believe, the tomato used to be thought of as poison many centuries ago. Then, it was grown as only ornamental garden decor, and finally - some brave people realized they were passing up a great BLT sandwich. I re-created that sandwich with Smokey Tea Tomato jam last summer right here.

When tomatoes were first brought to Italy, it's thought they were probably the yellow ones as the Italians and Spanish named it Pomi d'oro (now known as Pomodoro) meaning "apple of yellow/gold). The French (not too surprising) called them Pommes d'amour (apples of love) because they thought the tomatoes were aphrodisiacs. But, don't the French think air is aphrodisiac, too? Love that about the French!

So, this month's canning challenge for Tigress Can/Jam was the glorious TOMATO; chosen by Julia of What Julia Ate.
Here's my adaptation of a recipe from the Minimalist for Tomato Jam:


1 lb. Garden fresh tomatoes (peeled, cored and chopped)
12 oz. sugar
1 lime (juice and zest)
1 Tbls. fresh ginger zested
1 whole Jalapeno (minced)
1 tsp each: cumin, black pepper and cinnamon
1 tsp. salt

Combine all ingredients in a deep saucepan. Cook on low until the sugar dissolves, stirring often.
Bring to a boil on Med., continue to stir, for several minutes.
Increase heat and boil until temp reaches 220F or check for jam set with a chilled plate (a dollop should have a little rise to it, and leave a space when you drag your finger through it).

Fill sterilized jars, leaving 1/2 inch headspace for food expansion. Seal immediately, and hot water bath for 10 minutes. Remove, carefully, and leave for 12-24 hours without moving. Label and store in a cool, dry place.

If you are new to canning, be sure to read over the correct process. Otherwise, you can make this jam, pour into containers, leave to cool, then refrigerate for consuming. Yipee, Cowboys and Cowgirls - this jam has a little bite back!


Khali//Bandit and the Scene Stealers said...

Ooo yummy. Love the photo too. I have never had farm fresh off the vine tomato and the way you described it made me feel like I was eating right along with you. Thanks for that!!!

Anonymous said...

i LOVE all the variations of jam in the tomato assignment this month! yours is particularly jammy-looking. love it!

Couscous & Consciousness said...

Now that jam looks good! I'm in winter right now, but longing for tomato season to roll around again. Great photos and lovely blog.

Deeba PAB said...

This sounds really good! WOW!!

Julia said...

So jammy looking! Indeed. How did you do it without any lemon? It looks particularly jelled. Lovely!

Jessica said...

I'm new to the whole canning thing (made my first batch of blackberry jam this week (yeah me!))and this sounds like something that is definitely doable. And delicious. Thanks for sharing!

bunkycooks said...

This sounds yummy! I love the heat in the jam. Can't wait to make this with all of the great tomatoes I have.

Carol said...

Oh my goodness does this ever look good. If I don't have enough tomatoes in my garden...I'll visit my in-laws and see if they can spare a few...I so want to try this.

A good friend sent me this link and I glad she did-I can't wait to do some more reading.

Thank you! :)

Cyndy said...

Wow is right. An ingenious way to use tomatoes and the ingredients are simple. Thanks!

showfoodchef said...

Boots and Cateyes: Thank you. We need to get you to a farm fast!

The Cosmic Cowgirl: I know, I loved all the variations too. And thanks for leaving word, here.

Coucous & Consciousness: Sue, Thank you for taking a look. Def keep this idea for summer, then next winter you'll have tomato jam, still.

Deeba : I love that you stopped by, big fan of your blog. Thanks.

Julia: Thank you so much. THe lime juice takes the place of lemon and I heat it to jam temp. around 220F. You def need the lime for acid enhancement for the tomatoes, etc.. Thank you for leaving word.

showfoodchef said...

Jessica: Very exciting, and I'm sure you'd love this one-so easy. Thx for leaving word.

Bunky Cooks: So jealous. Did you grow your own? THx and I hope you try it.

Carol: So happy to have you stop by and thank your friend for me,too!

Cyndy: Thanks for commenting. Yeah, it's pretty simple and fast and if you don't want to "can it" - makes a great "ready right now" jam.

Sean said...

I'm the founder/moderator for Punk Domestics (, a community site for those of use obsessed with, er, interested in DIY food. It's sort of like Tastespotting, but specific to the niche. I'd love for you to submit this to the site. Good stuff!

Brooke - in Oregon said...

I have this on the stove right now and it is yummy! My tomatoes are going crazy (maybe cause I planted so many 15 varieties) lol So I made this with a crazy combo of heirlooms and I used cayenne and anaheim peppers since that is what I had in the garden, my jalapenos got chomped on by the deer which was very weird! Thanks so much for the recipe and I LOVE your photos

Doreen said...

how much does this make - with only one pound of tomatoes I'm guessing that it makes 1 pint at most ... it looks gorgeous though and I think I'll make some.

Brooke - in Oregon said...

I just wanted to pop in and tell you what a HUGE hit this jam has been with our family and friends! I am adding this to the 'have to make again' list :) a dab of cream cheese on a cracker topped with this jam and you have an OUTSTANDING appetizer. Thanks so much for sharing your talents.

Unknown said...

wow that looks REALLY good!!

Lucas Kain said...

Nice! I bet it tastes like heaven. :)

call Nepal

Anonymous said...

I would also like to know how many half-pint jars this makes.