Thursday, May 24, 2012

Homemade Ketchup

I’ve always been intrigued with the idea of making my ketchup, but up until now, I’ve never seen a recipe. Step in Martha Stewart, who as always knows everything there is to know about everything, including our beloved staple of the burger and fries world - ketchup.

Contrary to what you might have thought, Martha says the red tomato sauce we know as ketchup today has come a long way from its beginning as fermented fish sauce. British traders brought back Asian condiments with them when they returned to Europe where they inspired hosts of various ketchups flavored with anchovies, mushrooms, and even walnuts. Our colonial ancestors in America experimented with beans and apples that they found on our shores. In the nineteenth century the tomato version that we know today took hold and the rest, as they say, is history.

Martha’s version of homemade ketchup bursts with chili and citrus flavors and the kick comes from a very spicy habanera pepper.  We’ve served Martha’s homemade ketchup with boiled shrimp and tested it with onion rights and fries. While we were crazy about the flavor, the consistency was different from commercial ketchup. We recommend straining it well every time you serve it. Otherwise, it tends to be on the watery side. The other thing I will mention is that the homemade version is more “saucy” and therefore doesn’t cling to the food when you dip it in as its bottled cousin does. But it also doesn’t stick to your fingers either.

Martha’s Homemade Ketchup
Martha Stewart Living Magazine – yield 2 ½ cups

1 - 28 ounce can diced tomatoes
1 medium yellow onion, quartered
3 garlic cloves, crushed with the flat side of a large knife
¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons packed dark brown sugar
¼ cup cider vinegar
2 teaspoons dry mustard
Pinch of ground nutmeg (freshly grated if possible)
¼ teaspoon ground allspice
Pinch of chili powder
½ teaspoon finely grated orange zest
1/3 cup freshly squeezed orange juice (about 2 oranges total)
2 tablespoons brewed espresso coffee
1 bay leaf
1 fresh habanera chili
Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper

Puree the diced tomatoes and juice, onion, garlic, and sugar in a food processor. Transfer the tomato mixture to a large heavy-bottomed stockpot. Add vinegar, 1 cup of water, the dry mustard, nutmeg, allspice, chili powder, orange zest, orange juice, espresso, bay leaf, and habanera chili.

Bring the mixture to a boil over medium heat. Reduce heat; simmer, stirring occasionally, until thickened, about 50 minutes.

Remove the habanera chili and puree half or the whole chili (depending on how much heat you like) with 1 cup ketchup in the food processor. Return pureed ketchup to the pot; stir until well blended. Season with salt and pepper, then let cool completely. Ketchup can be refrigerated in an airtight container up to 2 weeks. Serve with a side of coarse salt if desired.

For thicker ketchup, strain well and discard the liquid before serving.

This recipe will be shared with Foodie Friday at Rattlebridge Farms, Miz Helen’s Country Kitchen Full Plate Thursday, Foodie Friday at Not Your Ordinary Recipes, and On the Menu Monday at Stone Gable. I am very pleased to learn that this recipe was chosen to be one of the featured recipes on Food Fetish Friday at Javelin Warrior's Cookin w/ Luv. Javelin shares his food finds in a series called Food Fetish Friday that I know you'll enjoy as much as I did. Thanks Javelin!

* * *

The winner of the give-away of the delightful book Paris was Ours by Penelope Rowlands is Claudia of Journey of an Italian Cook - Finding the Mediterranean in Minnesota. Congratulations Claudia. Please get in touch with me with your address and I’ll get it off to you right away.

A special thanks to each of you that took the time to leave a comment and participate in the give-away. I really enjoyed reading why you would love to visit or live in Paris. I also thank you from the bottom of my heart for supporting me and following or subscribing to My Carolina Kitchen. You are the best!

This is also Memorial Day weekend. I want to take the time to say a big thank you to the families who have given the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom. We should all remember that freedom is not free. God Bless America and all of those who have or who are currently serving their country. My father was a WWII veteran and Meakin served during Vietnam.

I hope you and your family have a safe and wonderful Memorial Day. And slather some of Martha's homemade ketchup on your burgers or hot dogs. Enjoy your weekend everyone!


  1. I love homemade ketch-up (we call it tomato sauce) and I love homemade tomato relish too - so much better than anything out of a bottle!


  2. Goregous! Homemade ketchup is really addictive.



  3. Martha rules and your photos look so good; I feel like taking a bite. I make a green ketchup with green tomatoes just like my mother used to make. It would probably really be called chow chow.

  4. Jacques recently made a version of ketchup..Yours ..sounds so good w/ the coffee..
    Have a great weekend.

  5. I am trying to wean myself from bottled sauces from the market...I've GOT to give this a try. It sounds wonderful Sam. Pinned.

  6. This sounds great Sam! You wouldn't by any chance have a recipe for the French Mayonaise that you dip Pomme Frites into, would you?

  7. I have never been much of a ketchup fan, but I have always wanted to make my own. I do like mustards though and I usually dip my fries in a mayo sauce. The first time I really enjoyed ketchup was when I was in England where this pub had HP curry ketchup...I loved it and I brought some home. I must try this. Love the photos, I know you enjoyed the food!

  8. Sounds really interesting.

    I have had fun catching up with your blog. I pinned the recipe for Chicken and Olives. Everything looks so yummy and here I am, on a diet!!

  9. Love the list of ingredients in this recipe!

    I watched a documentary about the Heinz family. They came from Germany and apparently came the idea of making ketchup from the founder's mother.

  10. This sounds delicious, I have a sauce recipe that we just love, it tastes so much better than the bought 'stuff'! Must try your recipe out. Diane

  11. Could agave nectar or sugar substitute be used for diabetics?

  12. Mouthwatering! I am a fan of homemade ketchup!

  13. First - I am thrilled and my Francophile daughter is equally thrilled to be receiving the book courtesy of your generosity. I am sure when we are done we will be itching to get to Paris!

    I've wondered about making a condiment and have never gotten around to doing it in my lazybones lifestyle. I am loving the flavors of this and that habanero chili!

  14. I bet this ketchup is wonderful. My hubby is as stubborn as a mule, and he will only eat Heinz...we even got a case for a wedding present :/

  15. I can't wait to try this! Homemade ketchup sounds like you have been in the kitchen all day! Isn't there something so satisfying about making things from scratch!
    Thanks for the very unique recipe!

  16. What a lovely recipe. I will for sure try this out. Your photos are making me hungry. Thanks for sharing.

  17. Every Friday, I share my favorite food finds in a series called Food Fetish Friday. I love this post so much I'm featuring it as part of the roundup (with a link-back and attribution) and I hope you have no objections. It's a pleasure following your creations…

  18. We don't eat a lot of ketchup but that might change if I make this recipe. I love a good crispy fried potato or onion ring and the flavors in this sauce look so good. Thanks for sharing this one, Sam. Have a great holiday weekend.

  19. Now here's a ketchup I think I can get behind. Normally, I am not a fan but this looks completely different than the junk you get at the supermarket. Thanks for sharing!

  20. This recipe would be fun to try with tomatoes from my garden late this summer. I like that it is a little spicy.

  21. Now this is a ketchup I could sink my teeth into! I love the selection of spices and the citrus flavors! Hope you have a lovely Memorial Day weekend, and a perfect start to the summer season!

  22. Yum! I love ketchup on all kinds of stuff...this sounds amazing. Have a great holiday weekend, Sam.

  23. I used to make ketchup but now we use so little of it that it hardly seems worthwhile. This recipe has inspired me to try it.

  24. That looks great, Sam. I used to make chili sauce with my aunt...we'd get about 4 of us working in the kitchen and make a HUGE batch. Nothing better on a grilled cheese!

  25. This ketchup recipe must taste amazing with the addition of orange zest in it! I love citrus flavor added to savory foods.

    Have a Happy memorial Day weekend, Sam!

  26. Hi Sam,
    I just love homemade sauces, really they are just better. This Homemade Ketchup looks delicious, I just love the "kick". We will be trying this recipe very soon, as Martha would say, "it's a good thing"!

    Hope you have a very special week end and thank you so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday.
    Come Back Soon!
    Miz Helen

  27. I don't often eat ketchup because I find it too vinegary. Your homemade version sounds wonderful.

  28. Really? You made ketchup? Why did I think that this was unmakable? Now I feel like experimenting with all those different versions.

  29. This homemade version looks like it has lots more 'body' than commercial ketchup. I'd love to try making some myself!

  30. Coincidentally, I, too, made ketchup (of sorts) today to accompany an Asian burger. I'll probably post about it one day soon.

    But it's nothing as developed as this one which I'm sure tastes nothing like Heinz!!

    Beautiful Memorial Day sentiment. Thank you for saying those words.

  31. Wow, there are lots of big flavors in this recipe, it sounds great! Happy Memorial Day Weekend:@)

  32. Sounds like a perfect recipe to master for the summer - looks deliciously homemade!

  33. Great post Sam and I would take your kitchen any day wish u and Meakin were in Nice with us

  34. Wow what a list of ingredients but it sounds fabulous! I must try this! And from the way you describe it you are right to dip shrimp in it. Fabulous!

  35. This recipe looks amazing....but wow that is a LOT of ingredients! I think I need Martha to personally show me how to make it :)


  36. I need to try making the classic burger condiments from scratch this summer. I've done mayo and mustard before.

    It was great seeing you and Meakin as well as meeting his brother and sister in law.

  37. Sam, stunning photos... great post. osunds so much more delicious than Heinz

  38. What a feast. This recipe is a keeper. I can think of so many dishes that can use it.

  39. This sounds really delicious. What a fun thing to try.

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