Chili Sauce - Key - ©

Blast From The Past: Tomato Chili Sauce

Time for another installment in our look at heritage Pickles! One thing that we don’t see much anymore – at least in mainstream cooking – is good, old-fashioned Chili Sauce. It’s more like a Relish than a Sauce or a true Pickle, but it’s definitely in the same family. Have a look…

Tomato Chili Sauce on a Dog - © redcookbook.netChili Sauce on a Dog: A classic presentation. Try it on Burgers, too.
And don’t forget BBQ’d Meats – just about any of them!

This old-time favourite is great on Burgers and Hot Dogs and is even used as a topping for Steaks and Chops. As my Grandma used to say, “Make lots. It goes with everything!” And it’s a great way to preserve surplus Tomatoes. Yes, there’s a Green Tomato variant, too, but it’s made a little differently and it’s definitely not equivalent to the Red Tomato classic!

What you’ll need…

  • 18 large, ripe Red Tomatoes
  • 2-3 large Onions (White, Sweet, Red or Spanish) or 2 lb / 1 Kg
  • 2 Green Peppers
  • 2 tbsp. Salt
  • 6 whole Cloves
  • 2 tsp. Red Pepper Flakes (opt.)
  • 1 cup Brown Sugar (packed)
  • 1.5 cup Vinegar

Here’s what you do…

Wash and cut up Tomatoes, Onions and Peppers in a small (1/4 in. / 1 cm) dice. Place in a large Sauce Pan or Stock Pot. Add the remaining Ingredients. Stir well. Bring to a boil then simmer for 1 hour, stirring occasionally.

Bottle as described in Heritage Pickles Intro. Will keep up to 6 months in a cool dark place.

Variations on this classic…

All these have been tried before, with great success…

  • Add a small head of Celery, diced same size as the other veggies. This will smooth the overall flavour of the Pickle, which is naturally on the Vinegary / acid side.
  • If you ‘like it hot’, do add some Hot Pepper Flakes, per the option suggested in the Ingredients List. Or use fresh Jalapeños
  • You can use any colour of Sweet Peppers you want, but Green is traditional, as it provides a nice note of colour contrast to the Pickle.

Try it on everything!

Like Grandma said, it goes with almost everything. Although I think I’d draw the line at spooning it over Ice Cream. Just Kidding. But do consider using it as a BBQ Marinade and Glaze. And I’m going to try the Spicey kind as a quick-and-dirty topping on Nachos… The more you use it, the more ideas you’ll get!

~ Maggie J.