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Recipe Finder | Tomato jam

Helen Wallace of Hurley, N.Y., was looking for a recipe for tomato jam or preserves made with honey. Her mother made it in the 1950s, and Wallace doesn't know how she did it.

Mary Feigley of Baltimore shared a recipe for making tomato jam with honey. Tomato jam is essentially a fancy ketchup substitute that can be used as an accompaniment for both savory and sweet foods.

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As foolproof recipes go, there is nothing much simpler than tomato jam — just combine all the ingredients in a heavy, nonreactive pot and cook them down until they are thick and sticky. You don't have to peel or seed the tomatoes, and just about any type of firm ripe tomato — from cherry to heirloom to plum — will work for this type of jam.

If you don't want to fool with sterilization, this jam will keep in a jar in the refrigerator for about a week or in the freezer for a couple of months. However, I think it's worth the extra effort to go through the canning process, and it's not that difficult. That way you'll be able to enjoy the last of the flavorful summer tomato crop well into the depths of winter.

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Requests

Billie McElroy of Redmond, Ore., is looking for the recipe for the "original" mayonnaise cake.

Isabelle Burell of Parkville is looking for the recipe for the stewed tomatoes that were served at the now-closed Perring Place restaurant in Parkville. She said the restaurant would never give her the recipe, and she was hoping someone might know the ingredients.

Tomato jam

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Makes 3 half-pint jars

3 pounds firm, ripe tomatoes (about 8 cups), cored and diced

1 cup honey

1 1/2 cups granulated sugar

1/2 teaspoon lemon zest

2 tablespoons lemon juice

2 vanilla bean pods, split

Pinch of fine sea salt

In a large, nonreactive pot, combine ingredients, including both vanilla pods. Simmer over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until mixture is very thick and "jammy," about 11/2 hours. Discard vanilla pods.

If canning, spoon into hot, sterilized jars and follow basic directions for canning.

If not canning, let jam cool, then store in refrigerator or freezer. The jam will keep in the refrigerator for about a week and can be frozen for up to 6 months.

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