Tomato and chilli jam

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By: Tamasin Day-Lewis From: Tamasin's Weekends

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This recipe is classed as intermediate

Rating 3.55 / 5 (157 votes)

Prep time:
15 min
Cook time:
1 hr
makes 1 litre

Try this piquant jam with a kick from Tamasin Day-Lewis. A real favourite with cheeses or as a delicious dip served with crackers


1. Dice half the quantity of tomatoes.

2. Blend the whole tomatoes in a food processor along with the garlic, chillies, ginger and fish sauce until the mixture reaches a pureƩ consistency.

2. Pour the mixture into a deep heavy-based pan together with the sugar and vinegar. Bring to the boil and slowly stir.

3. Once the mixture has reached boiling point, reduce to a simmer and add the remaining diced tomatoes.

4. Skim off any scum that forms with a metal spoon and cook for 30 -40 minutes, stirring from time to time to prevent sticking.

5. Pour the mixture into a warmed sterilised jar. Seal while still warm and label the jars when cold. Alternatively pour on a glass serving dish and allow to cool before serving.

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Latest Comment


As Day-Lewis mentioned in the book where this recipe was originally published, the jam needs to be simmered for at least 1 and 1/2 hours.

I've made this delicious jam many times and have never had a problem with excess liquid. I've also added a few cloves and some mustard seeds but, apart from that, I've never fiddled with the recipe.

The key is simmer.....and then simmer some more

LibbyA339 LibbyA339  Posted 02 May 2015 8:07 AM

I have now made this version of chilli jam and have decided it is so much better than my other version, I made double the amount as I have chilli addicts in my family, they have all said how great this is, my son uses in his stir fry.
As I have done such a lot at one time I found quite a lot of juice so I took about 6 large spoons of juice out and added a whole small tin of tomato puree and a bit of salt to taste.
Try it, great as a dip with crisps or on top of chilli con carne, and I did add more fresh chillies than stated.
Thank you for this recipe.

Daisy darling Daisy darling  Posted 17 Sep 2013 11:54 AM

If your jam container is sealed and hasn't been opened, this jam will last for ages!

Charlotte - Good Food Charlotte - Good Food  Posted 19 Sep 2011 5:14 PM

How long will it keep?

Bess1e Bess1e Posted 18 Sep 2011 1:36 PM

Hello Joanna. Make sure you bring the pan to a full hard boil for at least minute in step 2)...that should help.

Charlotte - Good Food Charlotte - Good Food Posted 12 Sep 2011 2:39 PM

I made a double quantity of this but couldn't get it to thicken. Any suggestions?

JoannaD58753 JoannaD58753 Posted 09 Sep 2011 6:00 PM

If you only ever make/eat/but one savoury jam make it this one! I nearly went bankrupt last year as after giving a couple of jars away I was inundated with demands for more, more, more. It is completely moreish and can be used for a multitide of different things.

GabrielleW21187 GabrielleW21187 Posted 07 Jun 2011 1:43 PM

I have been making this as per the original Peter Gordon recipe(Sugar Club Cookbook,1997)in 6 or 8kilo batches.In my opinion
he made a mistake in the length of the final cooking time (which has carried through to the copied versions.) Peter Gordon though, does make it clear that the jam must be boiled to setting point;when it is very syrupy and very thick. In my experience, this could take 2 hours or more if you keep a gentle simmer.A five star product though; truly scrumptious.

JohnB45480 JohnB45480 Posted 18 Mar 2011 4:25 PM

After my previous comment, I thought I'd put it to the test and make this years batch.

I used just over 2000g of tomatoes (2150g to be exact), and 2/3 of that was large 'salad' tomatoes, the other third cherry (which tend to break down much more, so I used less to combat the left over liquid situation).

I left the cherry toms whole and cut the salad tomatoes into quarters. All the other ingredients I simply multiplied by 4 (2000g of toms = 500g x 4) - EXCEPT for the sugar, which I lowered to 1000g (200g less than the x 4 multiplier of 1200g) AND also kept the chillis down to the same amount in the original recipe. This was a personal preference as the folks I'm giving the jam too aren't fans of really hot food. I used three large chillis, 2 deseeded, 1 whole. I find this, along with the tang of the fresh ginger, is just the right picancy and tang that I wanted from a chutney or 'jam'. I also only blitzed a handful of the tomatoes, and that was more than enough to get the garlic, ginger chilli mixture wet enough. Using more tomatoes is a waste because it will just get poured down the sink at the end.

I cooked for 40 minutes, and the end result was just enough to fill 3 500ml jars, and still, unfortunately a pan full of liquid left over.

I've revised my take on this recipe for future to make 4 jars by using 4000g of tomatoes - that should be enough to comfortable make 4 full jars and probably a little left over to pop in the fridge in a bowl to eat immediately once cooled.

Again, this recipe is delicious and everyone I know absolutely loves it, but I can't understand Tamasin's quantities of tomatoes here, 500g just will never make 1 litre of the jam.

KellyM67578 KellyM67578 Posted 17 Dec 2010 1:06 PM

I've made this as an Xmas gift for 3 years now and everyone loves it, always have to make more than I did the previous year.

I will say, that I am always left with a pan half full of liquid which is, unfortunately, useless. The quantities in this recipe make half a litre (one 500ml jar) in my experience, so I suggest doubling or even quadrupling your quantities if you're making a big batch for gifts.

This accounts for people finding the end result "runny" - I use a slotted spoon to get out the tomatoes and only take some of the liquid.

To combat the amount of liquid leftover, I use a mixture of cherry and larger tomatoes, and also only blitz a quarter, rather than a half of the tomatoes at the start. Hope these tips help, because this is a really delicious recipe!

KellyM67578 KellyM67578 Posted 16 Dec 2010 10:52 AM

Made this yesterday but is it mean't to be quite runny

dippzy dippzy Posted 22 Sep 2010 3:31 PM

Fantastic with cheese and crackers.

bbarnett bbarnett Posted 11 Sep 2010 11:09 AM

I will try this recipe to use up home grown tomatoes however it does not state how longe the chutney will last

GillianM43376 GillianM43376 Posted 01 Sep 2010 3:26 PM

This is really great used as a glaze on a baked ham, like you would marmalade.

JaneR79319 JaneR79319 Posted 10 Nov 2009 10:37 PM


BeverleyK83601 BeverleyK83601 Posted 07 Nov 2009 12:26 PM

My comments below - forgot to rate it! Full 5 stars from me!

Fibee Fibee Posted 16 Oct 2009 11:59 AM

This is a fantastic recipe. I get asked for orders all the time. It doesnt set too well unless you really boil it. Jam sugar may help the setting process. Great with Doritos and cheese & crackers.

Fibee Fibee Posted 16 Oct 2009 11:58 AM

I've replaced the fish sauce with chicken stock, still making it , it smells good, hope it tastes as good.

PeterM47490 PeterM47490 Posted 07 Oct 2009 3:16 PM

i am thinking of making this jam for christmas presents but want to make it far in advance, how long does it keep for?

sallyJ88166 sallyJ88166 Posted 05 Oct 2009 7:53 PM

i am thinking of making this jam for christmas presents but want to make it far in advance, how long does it keep for?

sallyJ88166 sallyJ88166 Posted 05 Oct 2009 7:52 PM

Love the idea of this recipe, but being a vegetarian,nearly a vegan, wanted to know if the fish sauce could be replaced with some other ingredient or sauce. Many thanks, Bhavna

Granweatherwax Granweatherwax Posted 02 Oct 2009 10:27 PM

I can't get this to set. The first time it was like water
I then added more sugar and reboiled it. It is now thicker but still runny any suggestions please?

kiwi711 kiwi711 Posted 25 Sep 2009 3:19 PM

DELICIOUS! But I found it makes half a litre (not a litre like it says). Also, I couldn't get fish sauce so i used soy sauce instead and it works a treat!

Angie2860 Angie2860 Posted 13 Sep 2009 5:35 PM

Absolutely divine. Nothing on earth that I have tasted matches this. Have made jars and given to friends all have the same comment - DIVINE.

sueP15093 sueP15093 Posted 01 Sep 2009 8:21 PM

Everyone loves this. Great with almost everything!

kamadu kamadu Posted 20 Aug 2009 9:08 PM

To die for. Top marks.

Laura MW70870 Laura MW70870 Posted 17 Aug 2009 12:34 PM

This is absolutely fantastic with strong cheddar, or with bagels, cream cheese and ham - heaven!!

SUSANB72208 SUSANB72208 Posted 04 Apr 2009 2:46 PM

This is so quick and easy to make. It is absolutely delicious.

Jackiex Jackiex Posted 02 Apr 2009 9:25 AM