Cut up fruit and vegetables need to be simmered in vinegar until soft, and then the sieved purée is sweetened and spiced and cooked gently until smooth and creamy with a bright colour and distinct flavour. Ketchup will be thin and almost clear. Both can be bottled in sterilized sauce bottles with vinegar-proof screw tops, but the filled bottles must be sterilized as well. Sauces should be stored in a cool dark place so that they do not discolour. If sauce does not keep, it may be because bottles and covers were not clean, or correctly sterilized. If sauce ferments or is mouldy, it must be thrown away, and this may have occurred because covers were not airtight or the storage place was too warm. If the mixture is not cooked long enough, there may be too much water left in, and this will also cause deterioration. Sometimes sauce has a slightly watery appearance and separates during storage, which probably means it has not been cooked quite long enough, and it is best shaken well to restore smoothness.
© 1978 Mary Norwak estate. All rights reserved.