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Cherry Tomato Jam with a Sicilian Twist

We got back from our month in Spain and low and behold, my cherry tomato plant was loaded!  We ate lots of tomato items on this trip.  A more savory style tomato jam popped up frequently on tapas, pinxtos, and the Spanish version of tostada, basically a toasted piece of bread or baguette with items on top.

Sensational stuff.  Wanted to bring some home but the wine I bought took priority in reaching the 50 pound checked bag limit so I made my own batch.

This jam has savory spices- cumin, chili and cinnamon.  One of the recipes I pulled from called it Spicy Sicilian Tomato Jam.  Don’t know about you but that title sold me.

Smaller Batch (Spicy Sicilian) Tomato Jam (makes 2 – 3 pints)

3  pounds of cherry tomatoes
1 cup sugar
7 tablespoons lime juice
2 teaspoons cumin
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon saffron
1/2 tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon red chili flakes

Combine all ingredients in a large, non-reactive pot.  Don’t worry about peeling and seeding the tomatoes, just cut them in half, and if some of them are larger, perhaps into quarters.  This is jam is about texture.

Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer.  Stirring regularly, simmer the jam until it reduces and gets a bit thicker.  This takes from 1 to 1 1/2 hours.

When the jam has cooked down, remove from heat, let it sit a few minutes then fill jars, leaving 1/4-inch of head space.  Wipe off the rims of the jar, apply the lids and twist on the rings (finger tip tight).  Process in a boiling water bath canner for 20 minutes.

Remove jars from water bath and allow them to cool.  When cool enough to handle, make sure to test the seals. This should last for up to one year.

(I tweeked one recipe and pulled from others, substituting saffron for cloves, using lime juice instead of lemon and omitting 3 tablespoons of freshly grated ginger because that wasn’t in the house.  I reduced the sugar and increased the lime juice amounts.  Next time I’ll increase spice amounts you see above and may try smoked paprika instead of saffron.)

The sources I used to get to my concoction are Sippity Sup, the Bitten blog and Food In Jars.


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