I would never have had this idea had the wonderful lady who looks after my kids one day a week not once given them some leftover passata in the fridge instead of ketchup. I couldn’t believe it when I came home halfway through their tea and they were totally fooled. So I had the idea of making real ketchup. At which point I realised that I had absolutely no idea what should go in. Well it turns out that the main ingredients are tomatoes, vinegar and sugar. The ingredients on the back of the bottle of supermarket ketchup in the fridge are: water, tomato purée, sugar, spirit vinegar, maize starch, salt, salt (again), maltodextrin, tomato powder, clove extract, paprika extract. Well that could be worse couldn’t it – but I still thought I could do better.
I settled on trying a recipe similar to one from Veg Every Day by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall and decided to include the spices and see what happened. To my delight the kids liked it but if you don’t think yours will then leave them out.
1 x 400g tin chopped tomatoes
2 tbsp red wine vinegar
2 tbsp brown sugar
1/8 tsp mace
1/8 tsp mixed spice
Put all the ingredients in a pan, blend together and cook on a low heat until thick. This took nearly an hour but will depend on how watery your tomatoes are. You could use passata to save yourself the blending stage, or indeed make your own tomato sauce using fresh tomatoes if you have time.