This sweet and savory old fashioned tomato jam recipe (a.k.a. tomato chutney) is perfect for burgers, charcuterie, breakfast and brunch.
This is not your normal jam recipe, though if you're planning to can it, you can use the easy method I follow for my easy peach jam with less sugar and no pectin.
Just remember to add the hot jam to the hot jars and seal with the lids immediately.
And surely, this is an old-fashioned tomato jam chutney but the Mediterranean way. And by this I mean that this recipe is infused with the sweet aromatic scent of rose geranium leaves.
The rose geranium scent
Rose geranium, also known as Pelargonium graveolens, is a plant easily found in many parts of the Mediterranean, since it’s an ornamental plant well adapted to the Mediterranean climate and requires little to no care.
It’s often used in sweet and savory recipes due to its unique smell that's a blend of floral and citrus with a hint of earthiness.
It's like the essence of a romantic rose garden infused with a zesty burst of lemon and a touch of green foliage.
The result is a scent that's simultaneously soothing and invigorating, making it a perfect candidate to add an unexpected twist to our tomato jam chutney.
My mom uses rose geranium to flavor our raisins. She just stores the raisins inside an airtight container with some rose geranium leaves among them. So simple!
For this easy tomato jam chutney recipe you'll need the following simple ingredients:
- White sugar
- Balsamic vinegar
- Rose geranium leaves
Use your favorite tomato variety. Beefsteak tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, Roma tomatoes and any other variety will work.
White sugar is suggested to let the other flavor shine. Brown and dark brown sugar will give caramel notes to the jam.
Instead of rose geranium, you can also use aby leaves, lavender, lemon peel or thyme. Put the lavender and the thyme in a pouch made of cheesecloth, so that you can easily remove them when the jam is cooked.
The sugar to fruit ratio
This marmalade hasn’t the typical fruit to sugar ratio, which in most recipes is approximately 60-40 (60% fruit and 40% sugar).
The amount of sugar is quite low because it is intended to be eaten mostly with savory dishes.
Also, tomatoes are rich in pectin, so the jam doesn't need a lot of sugar to thicken.
Many people call this tomato chutney, another hint that you should use it to accompany your favorite roast meat, burger, charcuterie, steak or sandwich.
Slathered on a slice of bread or some crackers and a slice of cheese wouldn’t be bad either.
I have also served it during brunch, as a condiment for these pizza flavored savory muffins, just to give them a little twist.
In this post I give you relatively small amounts of ingredients, enough to fill a medium jar and keep it in the fridge. It will last at least one month. But if you feel like boiling and sterilizing jars you can certainly make a larger batch.
Note: During cooking, test for doneness by dropping a small quantity of jam on a cold plate, then check the consistency. Remember that when cold, it will thicken a little more. It is better to undercook it than to overcook it. If you undercook it, you can always boil it a little more!
Please share this post if you liked it and give it a star rating once you make it!
Old-fashioned tomato jam recipe (tomato chutney)
- 1 ½ pounds ripe but firm tomatoes - 700 grams from which you will get 1 ¼ pounds (580gr) peeled and cored tomatoes
- ½ cup (100 grams) sugar
- 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
- Pinch of salt
- 1-2 rose geranium leaves (optional)
- Prepare the tomatoes: Score the bottoms of the tomatoes with a sharp knife and put them in a big pot with boiling water for one minute.Drain, add tap water to cool, and peel them off. Cut them in half and discard any hard white parts. Then, puree them in a food processor or through a food mill.
- Make the jam: In a wide, heavy bottomed saucepan add the tomato puree, the sugar, the balsamic vinegar, the salt and the geranium leaves.Simmer over medium heat, stirring occasionally (and more frequently during the end).
- When it is glossy and thick enough to spread, remove from the heat and discard the geranium leaves.Let the jam cool and transfer into a jar and store in the fridge.