Tomato Chili Jam

Tomato Chili Jam

I’ve been craving tomato and chili jam smeared on a good-old ham sandwich for weeks; I couldn’t wait any longer. I hightailed it to the Farmer’s Market to pick up the ripest sun-kissed tomatoes I could find. I chose a combination of sweet Early Girl tomatoes and an assortment of earthy, complex, organic heirlooms. I also picked up a handful of brightly colored, red-ripened Poblano Peppers that would add a delicate heat to the jam. 

Homemade condiments make everything taste delicious; they are full of love. Think of the ripple down effect of gifting bottles of homemade jam to friends or neighbors. Think of their delight, dolloping it on cheese and crackers, or elevating a Sunday night grilled cheese. They’ll taste the time and care you took to make them something special. Making this seasonal jam is good for your soul, so start recycling your condiment jars!

Prep—30 min  

Cook—1 hour 30 minutes 

Makes–Approximately 4 ½ cups

Storage–Keep in the refrigerator

Tip–Sugar could be reduced to ½ cup if you’re being sugar-mindful; it just won’t be as jammy.


3 lbs (8 cups) very ripe tomatoes, coarsely chopped

4 fresh red poblano peppers

4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

4 shallots, finely diced

Fresh ginger, a 2-inch piece, peeled and grated

1 teaspoon chipotle chili powder

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 cup (240ml) champagne vinegar (good white or red vinegar would work)

¾ cup (145g) light brown sugar, lightly packed

2 tablespoons fish sauce


1—To sterilize the jars, preheat the oven to 325F. Wash the jars in very hot, soapy water, rinse thoroughly, then place on a baking tray and dry in the oven for 10-15 minutes.

2— Over medium to high heat, place the peppers on top of the gas burner on the stovetop. Allow the flame to char the skin completely. Use tongs to rotate the peppers so they blister on all sides. Once they are fully blackened and the flesh is soft, remove the peppers from the flame and cover with a clean dishcloth or plastic wrap to sweat them for five minutes. This will help loosen the skin from the flesh. Remove the skin by rubbing with your hands or paper towel, and discard skins. Cut a slit along the length of the pepper and remove the seeds. Roughly chop.

3—In a large heavy-based saucepan over medium heat warm the oil. Add the shallots, ginger, chipotle powder and salt and saute until translucent and soft. Add the tomatoes, chopped peppers, vinegar, sugar and fish sauce. Bring the mixture to a gentle boil, then lower the heat and simmer for 1 hour and 30 minutes, or until the mixture is very thick, stirring occasionally. If you run a wooden spoon through the mixture, very little liquid should remain in the channel.

4—Cool, then spoon into sterilized jars. Seal and keep in the refrigerator.