I’m the first to admit that I planted my tomatoes too late last year. I got the seeds in the Woolies Discovery Garden, followed the instructions, excitedly waited for them to sprout (and they did!), and watched them grow until I had to replant them into pots. The result was plenty of beautiful tomatoes… that stayed green with no sign of ripening, not even a hint of yellow because I live in Melbourne and don’t have a green house. It’s just too cold.
So, what to do with these beautiful green home grown tomatoes? Turn them into preserves of course. You can find plenty of recipes for jams, pickles and chutneys both in books and online that use green tomatoes. The challenge is narrowing it down to ones that are both appealing and that you feel confident enough to create.
The one that I finally wound up choosing was Green Tomato Jam from Preserves by Jill Nice, which you can borrow from Libby for free with your library card. This recipe can be found on page 260 and not only does it contain green tomatoes, but being a jam, it also contains sugar, and a fair bit of it, but that’s one thing that does differentiate it from a pickle or relish. That and the absence of vinegar.
This jam would be perfect with cheese, either as an alternative to quince paste on a cheese platter or on a cheese sandwich.
Here are a few tips and tricks that I learnt along the way:
- You need to plan ahead with this recipe. The first step is to macerate the sugar and sliced green tomatoes for 24 hours, so you need to take that into account when you decide to make this jam.
- The recipe makes a lot of Jam. I halved the recipe and was happy with the amount that I had.
- Make sure to keep an eye on it and stir it on a regular basis. This recipe contain 750g of sugar and you don’t want it to burn or stick to the bottom of the saucepan.
- To make a plate cold enough to see if the jam’s reached setting point (and can therefore be put into jars) put the plate in the fridge or freezer once you start cooking the jam.
For more recipes check out some of the eBooks available from our eLibrary collection:
For more information on YPRL's services and programs visit Your Library at Home.
Kathryn Healey, Library Officer