Where we are, in Queensland, tomatoes are in season and so are very well priced at the moment. They were only $2.99 per kg for organic Romas at the markets last week, so of course I stocked up so that I could make some relish to get us through the winter. There is nothing like the smell (and taste) of a relish cooking. It is so easy to make and you will benefit for months after if you make a decent sized batch.
Bottles of relish are also a great gift. Receiving something home-made and delicious is a memorable experience!
This is my version – you can tweak it with different herbs and spices, or add a couple of chillis if you like a kick. I added lots of Thyme to mine today as my thyme plant has gone nuts! I like to use Rapadura sugar because it is less processed and just happens to give a deeper, richer flavour.
About steralised jars and storage. Note these important points:
- It is important to steralise your jars well, either in the oven or dishwasher.
- Only add hot food to hot jars and cooled food to cooled jars.
- Leave the mix to settle in the jar for 15 mins before putting the lid on.
If you prefer a tomato sauce to a relish, don’t let it get too thick, puree once cooled, then decanter into sauce bottles. YUM! So here is the recipe. Enjoy!
A great way to preserve tomatoes and give a lift to vegetables, sandwiches and main meals.
- 2 large red onions, chopped - either roughly or finely, depending on your preference
- 3 large cloves peeled garlic, crushed
- 2 tbsp oil
- 1 tbsp sweet or smoked paprika
- 2kg ripe tomatoes, diced
- 1 cup rapadura sugar
- 2 tbsp dried mustard powder
- 1 cup red wine vinegar
- 1 tbsp curry powder
- bunch of fresh thyme - optional - still tastes good without it
- 1 tsp sea salt
- Heat the oil in a heavy-based saucepan and add the onions and garlic
- Cook over medium heat until the onions are soft.
- Add the paprika and stir for a minute.
- Add remaining ingredients except the salt. Bring to the boil and reduce to a simmer. Leave to simmer, uncovered for 1 hour. The relish will cook down and become darker and thicker. For a thicker relish - cook longer.
- Stir in the salt and cook for a further 5 minutes. (If you add the salt earlier, it will rise up with the steam and you will need to add more later).
- Decanter into steralised jars and store in a cool, dark place.