Boathouse Roma Tomato Jam

I  have an affinity for the idea of southern living.  I don’t know if I would enjoy actually living down in Dixie but in my perfect world, life is full of southern grace, charm, and food.  I think it would really depend on where in the south I happened to find myself.

I don’t think I could take the heat and humidity that seems to thrive down south (not that Maryland is any picnic in the summer).  And then there’s the whole tornado thing.  Maryland isn’t much of a tornado alley so the notion of storm cellars and twisters that can level entire neighborhoods makes me kind of uncomfortable.  Maybe it’s just that I’ve seen The Wizard of Oz and Twister too many times not to have a prejudiced notion of what it means to live with the possibility of these storms…god forbid somebody drops a house on me. And then there’s the bugs.  Fire ants, palmetto bugs, and mosquitoes the size of buzzards. My perfect world of southern living does not make accommodation for these pests.

So maybe actual southern living is not for me.  Perhaps I am better served by small doses of southern charm during long weekends away from the Free State. Regardless, thanks to my friend who let me borrow her copy of The Boathouse cookbook, I can bring a taste of that southern food into my own kitchen.  And right now, the south tastes like tomato jam. I wish that I did have a big cellar so that I could make big batches of this and can it for proper long term storage.  In my mind, that’s what my basement is for. Not for seeking refuge from the storm.

I am entering this recipe in the Get Grillin’ Event run by Family Fresh Cooking and Cookin’ Canuck, sponsored by Ile de France CheeseRösleEmile HenryRouxbe and ManPans. This week’s theme is appetizers.  Check out all the entries and submit one of your own!

Roma Tomato Jam

Adapted from The Boathouse

BAH Note: I’ve used this as a sandwich condiment, as a topping on flat bread, and on wee rounds of toasted baguette.  I bet it would be fantastic on a grilled pizza with some lovely, salty feta.

  • 1 container roma tomatoes (I guess there were about 6 or 8 tomatoes), coarsely chopped
  • 1 red onion, sliced thin
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

Heat olive oil in a large frying pan.  Add chopped tomatoes and onion and saute over medium high heat for about 5 minutes.  Reduce the heat to medium low and add the balsamic and brown sugar.  Stir to combine and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, for approximately 30 minutes or until a jam-like consistency is reached.  I turned off the heat when a spatula run through left a clean trail in the pan.

Serve at room temperature.  Leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator.

{printable recipe}

24 thoughts on “Boathouse Roma Tomato Jam

  1. That sounds delicious (especially if you add the salty feta, like you suggest)! I’m all about the salt.

    No way could I live in the South, but like you, I like the idea of living there.

  2. Yummy! I think down in Maryland you may have the best of both worlds, practically on the Mason/Dixon line, isn’t it? Not to mention you have those crab cakes. What’s not to like?

    1. Jennifer, sometimes Maryland feels like no man’s land. Folks up north think we’re down south and folks in the south think we’re yankees. It’s actually a very confusing place to live.

  3. as someone who has lived in the south before (southern VA for 4 years in college counts, right?) & dabbled in long visits to NC and TN, i agree with you. Southern hospitality is flipping amazing, ppl are so friendly, so accommodating (i credit the Dirty South for giving me the gift of “you’re welcome!” sure i knew what the term meant but EVERYONE DOWN THERE SAYS IT and i love it.)

    tomato jam sounds fabulous, i’m always on the lookout for new condiments. tho my next jar-treat is bacon jam…

    1. Lan, I wish somehow I could buy a jar of southern hospitality and carry it with me for life’s less than gracious moments.

      PS – I can’t argue with the merits of bacon jam.

    1. Tracy, as much as I “protest” about gaining weight from just looking at your posts, I am my own worst enemy. How else can I explain going from simple condiment to full on pizza making?

  4. Oh dear Wendi, I just think you totally made livin’ in the gracious south a little too real, I’m with you in the fantasy world, I love what I imagine it’d be like & use my basement to house all the preserves & what not 🙂
    Your tomato jam sounds wonderful.

    1. Anna, is there an Australian equivalent to “southern living”?

      The tomato jam truly is wonderful. I highly recommend you give it a try.

  5. Oh my gosh, the heat is the South is terrible. I will never forget a trip to New Orleans ten years ago; it was June and I was constantly covered in sweat. The tomato jam looks quite tasty and perfect for panini sandwiches with cheese and arugula – yum!

    1. Jen, that heat and humidity is a major stumbling block to me fully embracing southern living. I don’t do so well in hot, sticky situations.

      Yes, this jam would love you to put it on a panini. Please do so as soon as possible.

  6. Wendi – It was such a treat to spend time with you on Saturday! Thankfully, we were lucky enough to taste some of this fantastic jam – delicious! We will definitely be making this at home, plus the bacon addition – genius!

    1. Joanne, it was absolutely my pleasure. Can I tell you that I snacked on your left over tarts all day Sunday? They were fantastic.

      Can’t wait till the next time we’re all together. That was a crazy fun evening.

      And yes, I highly recommend you make a batch of tomato jam. Fresh from the frying pan on baguette slices? Heavenly.

  7. Oh, this looks like it would be SO GOOD on focaccia. I don’t know why I’m torturing myself by reading all of these food blogs this week and looking at dishes that I won’t be able to make until the following weekend due to being out of town…I’m calling it research. Yes, research.

    1. Elizabeth, I believe in thorough “research”. Focaccia with tomato jam? Absolutely. Maybe garnish with some finely chopped rosemary.

      Hope you are having a wonderful time wherever your trip has taken you. Are you bringing back any good food souvenirs?

  8. Pingback: Mini Chorizo Tarts
  9. My mom makes a lovely recipe with something similar – basically, just make the jam as stated above, but put a layer of cream cheese on the baguette first, then the tomato jam, then a few pieces of fresh basil on the top. Absolutely to die for.

    1. Sarah, I think your mom is a genius. Because a thin layer of cream cheese under the jam would be spectacular. Can’t wait to give that combination a try.

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