As I said in my post for my green tomato and chilli jam, I’ve had an absolute bumper crop of tomatoes and chillies this year. Although I didn’t get that many ripe tomatoes, I did manage to get some. Most were devoured in sandwiches, salads and pasta but I also made my fiery red chilli jam!
This Jam is super spicy and makes excellent gifts for Christmas. That is if you can bring yourself to part with them!
There’s no step-by-step images for this one as the recipe is simplicity in itself. But there is a printable recipe and a tale to tell! So please read on….
For me, food and recipes remind me of moments or people in my life that are special and this recipe is no exception.
Many years ago, before my eyesight went up the creek, I used to work in the craft industry. I was very lucky to meet, and work with, some amazingly talented people. One such person was Lynda Piper. Sadly we’ve lost touch now, I’ve absolutely no idea how to contact her and I do miss her friendship!
Lynda is a talented artist and I remember vividly the first time I met her. She came ‘flouncing – Lynda style’ into my craft shop. She looked straight at me and said ‘I’m Lynda, you and I are going to be great friends, now take me to the unmounted rubber stamps!’
I love a bit of straight talking and she was right, we did become great friends. We worked together on Create and Craft and we travelled all over the country and abroad together when she demonstrated on my stand at various craft shows. We had an absolute hoot!
During our friendship she made me the book you see above and opposite. She inscribed it inside ‘to Lizzie to keep her memories in’. And that’s what recipes are to me – memories of food I’ve made or enjoyed and want to preserve on paper. Ever since I got the book I’ve used it to write my recipes. It’s now full as I’ve so many recipes and I absolutely cherries the book. It’s one of those possessions in life that I’d be gutted if anything happened to it, not necessarily because of the recipes it holds, but because of the nostalgia I get when I open it and remember Lynda and all our happy times.
The sentiment she’d stamped inside is also something that is so true and how I try to live my life. It reads ‘Write peace on your wings and you will fly over the world’. I take it to mean, treat everyone fairly and as you’d like to be treated, be satisfied with your life and don’t look back, get over your troubles and move on! Which is exactly how I try to live my life.
I really don’t know why Lynda and I lost touch, it’s just one of those things, but I’ll always treasure this book and my memories of her.
Below is the printable recipe for my fiery red chilli jam. For other recipes on my site please follow this link.
Fiery red chilli jam
A fiery red chilli jam.
- 500g of very ripe red tomatoes.
- 4 garlic cloves peeled.
- 4 large red chillies (I don’t deseed mine, but if you like you can deseed all bar one).
- About 2 – 3 tsp of finely chopped fresh ginger (sometimes I use more than this, it depends on how gingery I want it to be. The most I’ve added is 2 large tablespoons full).
- 30ml of fish sauce. Note that this is an essential ingredient in this jam, it is a bit unusual but the jam just won’t be the same without it. Whatever you do don’t sniff the bottle, otherwise it’ll make you gag 😉
- 300g of golden caster sugar (or jam sugar).
- 100ml of red wine vinegar.
- 1/2 a bottle of certo liquid pectin or one sachet of powdered pectin (not necessary if you are using jam sugar).
- a knob of butter (optional).
- Dice half of the tomatoes and set aside.
- Blend the other half of the toms with all the garlic chillies, ginger and fish sauce until you get a nice puree.
- Place the blended mixture into the deep heavy based pan with the sugar, vinegar and pectin (if using). Bring the mixture to the boil stirring slowly.
- Once the mixture has reached boiling point add the remaining diced tomatoes and reduce to a simmer.
- Continue to cook for another 30 – 40 minutes stirring occasionally and skim off any scum that raises to the top.
- At the end of cooking you can add a knob of butter to the pan if you want to, this helps any remaining scum dissipate and gives you a lovely shiny jam.
- Allow the mixture to cool slightly and pour into warmed sterilised jars, seal whilst warm and label.
This jam will keep for up to a year if packed into properly sterilised jars. Once opened though, be sure to keep in the fridge and use within a month. Enjoy!