Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Squeaky Wheel Gets the Grease

Success! It took a few politely persistent email requests, but I've now got the long coveted recipe for the lacto-fermented ketchup I sampled at 2010's PASA conference. The recipe comes from Maureen who blogs at Nourishing Traditional Cook.  I know more than one reader has asked for this, and I very much wanted it myself. I'm posting the recipe now so that anyone who wants to try it out with canned tomatoes can do so. Perhaps some of you Aussie readers have fresh tomatoes still to play around with. I'll probably wait until our own tomatoes come in and then smoke a few to mimic the fire-roasted flavor of the Muir Glen tomatoes called for in this recipe.

Lacto-fermented Ketchup

1, 20 oz Muir Glen Fire Roasted Tomato Puree
2 Tbsp. raw cider vinegar
2 Tbsp. whey (liquid, unpasteurized)
1/4 cup fermented fish sauce or 1/2 can anchovies in oil
1/4 large green pepper, sliced
1-2 Tbsp. raw honey
2 cloves garlic
2 tsp. basil
2 tsp. salt
1 tsp ground mace
1 tsp dry mustard
2 pinches ea. ground cinnamon and nutmeg

Puree in blender or VitaMix. Let sit on counter for 12-24 hours, refrigerate. You may also substitute balsamic vinegar for the whey. It won't be as much fermented, but is truly delicious!

By the way, I can attest to the high quality of the canned tomatoes called for in this recipe. They're what I relied on before we became self-sufficient in tomatoes. I don't know how many vegetarians or vegans are going to be put off by this recipe. All I can say is that this ketchup rocked my world. I'd eat this stuff on eggs, beans, or as a side dish to just about anything. It was that delicious.

I will definitely be playing around with this recipe this summer, and may post an update on any successful tweaks that I find especially pleasing. I'm curious to see whether I can incorporate a bit of onion without overwhelming the other flavors. My fumbling experimentation with lacto-fermented ketchup last year definitely taught me that any addition of onion should be tiny in comparison to the rest of the ingredients. If any of you experiment with the recipe - either using canned tomatoes or homegrown - I would really love to hear back from you about any tweaks you make, or just what you think of the recipe. Please let me know!

NOTE: If you entered the drawing for the homesteading books with an anonymous sign in and no identifying details (first name + city, or email address in the body of the comment), I can't verify your identity if you win. If this applies to you, leave another comment with some details to be sure you get a chance at the books. Anonymous entries with no details will be discarded. It's great to hear about so many small scale homesteads from all of you. Keep up the good work!


darius said...

Sounds yummy!

Fermented fish sauce... available commercially? Or if anchovies, what size can?

Kate said...

Darius, I don't have any certain answers for you since this isn't my recipe. But am I going to let that stop me from spouting off? 'Course not. I'm pretty sure all Asian fish sauce is fermented. The question would be, is it a live culture product, or not? I would suspect that most often the commercially sold stuff is not. Not sure how to go about finding some active culture fish sauce, but I do recall seeing garum in fancy NYC fooderies a few years ago. Not sure garum is live culture either, but I'm guessing the odds are better. Anchovy can size - probably the smallest. A little anchovy goes a long way. I'd say try the recipe with what you can lay your hands on and see how it goes. Then please report back! (Love the name - Daryoosh?)

Sandy said...

Sounds great! One question: how do YOU smoke your tomatoes?

Kate said...

Sandy, I did it in our grill until I built a trash can smoker. I've posted pictures of it a few times; you can search for smoker on my blog. I might do a more in-depth post on it later this year when I start using it more often. I mostly smoke cherry tomatoes, but some paste tomatoes too.

Anonymous said...

I will definitely be trying this, and soon. I have some Muir Glen sauce hanging about, and some frozen roasted tomato sauce in the freezer.... THANKS!!

Anonymous said...

ps, I would LOVE a more detailed how-to on the smoker, as I covet one after tasting the smoked Ancho powder you shared. Must. Have. More.

Hazel said...

Thank you for your persistence Kate!

My tweaks will be a different brand of tomatoes/purée, as I've never seen Muir Glen for sale here, and minus the green pepper and basil as there's none around at the moment. Well, there is in the supermarket, but you know what I mean. I might add something too, I'll let you know.

Alison said...

where do you get liquid unpasturised whey??

Hazel said...

Alison- I was going to strain live yoghurt and use yoghurt whey. I've used that to ferment other things, so it should work.

Sorry to jump in Kate!

Kate said...

Ali, great to hear. I'm eager to hear your results. And yeah, I'll try to get a post out soonish on the smoker. Glad you liked the chili powder.

Hazel, you're welcome and thanks for chiming in with the whey answer. Please let me know how your batch turns out. I'm hoping that a relatively "young" batch of it will have the marvelous flavor I remember, and not have to wait for some aging process.

Alison, it's a challenge in some places, I admit. Some states don't allow the sale of fresh raw milk products at all. If you can't get it in your state, try the balsamic vinegar. I'd recommend you find a dairy farmer if at all possible though. They can sometimes sell you raw products for "pet consumption."

darius said...

Thanks for the feedback on ingredients, Kate. I had pretty much assumed all fish sauce was fermented, and also wonder about any with live cultures. Not up to making my own. LOL.

btw, 'Darius' is a Greek translation of an old Sanskrit word meaning 'of the mountain'...

Kate said...

Darius, interesting to know the original meaning. You might want to recheck your sources for that Sanskrit origin claim though. I studied the Elamite and early Persian eras in some depth, so I'm pretty sure the name Darius was early Persian. I know our pronunciation is from the Greek, (the modern Persian name Daryoosh is pretty close to the original) and that the Persian and Sanskrit languages are related, but there's plenty of evidence that the Persians were culturally and linguistically distinct from anything in India by the time they reached what is now Iran. Both languages had written forms at the time of the Achaemenid empire, and the archaeological record of same is generous.

marie said...

I am thrilled to see this recipe. Have almost given up using Ketchup because I find it too sweet. Will report in when I make a batch. Marie