The first time one of our new chefs tasted this ketchup she smiled, and said ‘I could quite happily drink a bowl of that’. As with any ketchup it is an extremely versatile accompaniment, great with burgers of any kind or our Fish Finger Baps
1kg (about 40) roughly chopped and pitted firm ripe plums
400g onions, peeled and roughly chopped
2 Thai red chillies, deseeded and roughly chopped
8 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
75g ginger, peeled and grated
125ml soy sauce
500ml rice wine vinegar
3 star anise
1⁄4 teaspoon Chinese five-spice powder
250g soft light brown sugar
sterilized, glass jars with airtight lids
1 Put all the ingredients, except the sugar, into a lidded saucepan. Bring to the boil and then reduce the heat and simmer with the lid on until soft (approximately 30 minutes). Remove from the heat and leave overnight at room temperature for the flavours to develop.
2 The next day, push the mixture through a sieve and retain the liquid. Discard the pulp, star anise and onion. Return the liquid to a clean pan, add the sugar and bring to the boil. Simmer gently, uncovered, for 21⁄2 hours, stirring occasionally, until thick and glossy. While still hot, pour into a sterilized glass bottle or jar and seal with a lid. Store unopened in a cool, dark place for up to 12 months. Once opened, store in the fridge and use within 2 weeks.
Lantana Cafe Breakfast & Brunch by Shelagh Ryan (Ryland Peters & Small, £9.99)