Going gluten-free is hard, like really really hard when you crave burgers and grilled cheese sandwiches every now and then (yes, there are gluten-free buns, but it’s just not the same to me). The other thing that makes it hard? Spicy Smoked Tomato Jam. Ah, yes, my love of tomatoes turned into a delicious jam that is robust in depth and flavor. Think gourmet ketchup that is sophisticated and bold. Couple spicy smoked tomato jam to your burgers and grilled cheese sandwiches and you’ve created a meal that’s too yummy not to get seconds.
Because I am addicted to smokey flavors, I have amassed an arsenal of spices that have been smoked and will work on just about any food you want to give that bold flavor to. I also used all of these spices in my Spicy Smoked Tomato Jam, but you don’t have to and can still get the flavor you’ll love. The beauty of home cooking, it’s always the way you like it.
Liquid smoke. I am sometimes on the fence with this. I like it enough because it’s easy to use, but sometimes it changes the flavor of what I’m trying to make. But, it works well in tomato jam.
If you’re lucky enough to have a Savory Spice Shop near you, I say go in there and stock up. I walked in and asked ‘What do you have that’s smokey?’ and the sales guy took me all around the store, had me sampling and sniffing their spices. They have an amazing selection of just about any spice you can imagine. I especially love the Red Rocks Hickory Smoke and use it to give my tofu a “meaty” flavor.
Trader Joe’s has a nice spiced section and everything is priced right. Okay, Cayenne pepper isn’t smoked, but I used this for the spicy in my Spicy Smoked Tomato Jam recipe. Smoked Paprika is an absolute must if you love smokey flavors. I added boat loads of this. I also love the South African Smoke and use it on most of my veggies, especially when eating raw beefsteak tomatoes and avocado. If there is anything you have to make sure you need for your Spicy Smoked Tomato Jam, I’d say the Smoked Paprika, Cayenne and sea salt.
To make Spicy Smoked Tomato Jam, you will need:
3-4 large beefsteak tomatoes (or 6 Roma tomatoes)
1/2 cup brown sugar (more or less depending on taste)
1-2 tbsp olive oil
1-2 cloves of garlic
1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes
sea salt (smoked optional)
liquid smoke (optional)
smoked hickory seasoning (optional)
Chop the tomatoes coarsely, I wanted my jam to be chunky like a chutney, but you can chop it in the food processor if you want it to be more smooth. Chop the fresh garlic.
In a medium size pot on a medium heat, add olive oil, tomatoes, sugar, garlic and sun-dried tomatoes, stirring occasionally. Add your seasonings and taste until it’s the flavor you want. Add more cayenne to make it more spicy. Allow to simmer until most liquid has cooked out of your jam and it’s a thick consistency.
Remove from the pot and into your canning jars. For the proper canning technique, you can read this.
Vegetarian burger with Spicy Smokey Tomato Jam (using swiss chard).
This right here will change your life! Sauteing peaches or nectarines in olive oil and black pepper adds sweetness to your grilled cheese.