Pump-sup? Cat-kin? Pumpkin catsup? Still don’t have a good name for that…
After going vegan I haven’t bought catsup. Sam and I neglect to buy catsup every grocery trip, but we aren’t going out of way to avoid the stuff either. (Though honestly, some store brands have really questionable ingredient lists). Oftentimes when we make our black-bean burgers or homemade fries we grab the veganaise and mustard and say, “Man, I wish we had some catsup!”
No more! A couple days ago I tasked myself with two things: 1) finish off the pumpkin puree lifelessly laying in the fridge and 2) research recipes to make catsup. Simple concept: use pumpkin instead of tomatoes. In my head I was dreaming up tomato alternatives – we don’t normally buy them and I didn’t think to purchase any cans of tomato product. Pumpkin… has a similar sort of consistency. It’s a bit more fibrous and stringy but that could be remedied by blending more intensely. Pumpkin also has a rather subtle test (bland really) and that would definitely affect the flavor.
I was pretty confident: hit the tangy with some vinegar and get a little sweetness in with some sugar. There is a bit more to it than that – like a spice blend. During my research I found that I wasn’t really far off the mark. I was however surprised at the listing for some of the spices used – cinnamon, cloves, onion powder, garlic powder. The recipe I am showing you was adapted from this one on Wellness Mama. What really led me to this decision was ease. Seriously, just chuck it all into a blender and blend? I’m down.
Pumpkin Based Ketchup
3 Cups pumpkin puree
1/4 Cup Apple Cider Vinegar
1 1/2 TBS of Blackstrap Molasses
1 TS Sugar
1 1/2 TS Salt
1/4 TS Pepper
1/8 TS Chinese Five Spice Blend
3 cloves of garlic
Water to thin
Blend it all together! This is pretty thick sauce and you will probably need water to help thin it out so it will blend. Add only 1-2 TBS at a time until it blends. When it is done, transfer to container and let it sit overnight.
I must admit that these are all estimates to what I used – for I did not record them and did fumble around with the spices until I got a taste I liked. Which is what the recipe from above is born from. My boyfriend (my awesome guinea pig) loves it! He agrees that it is not a perfect imitation but hits the same flavor bases and is really quite delicious.
If you happen to try the recipe above, I offer you my notes: when I originally made this I used too much Chinese Five-Spice (consists of cinnamon, cloves, anise, star anise, and ginger). Or at least too much for my initial liking. Because I am not a huge fan of licorice (unless it’s Red Vines) I didn’t really dig the strength of the licorice-y flavor prevalent throughout the sauce. After letting it sit overnight though, I appreciate the kick it adds.
Now, feel free to adapt it to your own needs! Don’t have or want to use ACV? Use regular. Need more garlic? Add more garlic! In all honesty, it’s just a sauce that you can tailor to fit your own needs. In the future, I’d like to try making different flavored “ketchups”. I don’t have any ideas at the moment besides lemony, but there is a whole world of possibilities that has just opened up to me.
A long, long time ago, my family used to live on a small island in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean.
Life there was unhurried. Time went by so slowly to little 9 year old me. Considering there wasn’t much to do outside of going to the playground again (I was so over the playground) and my brother had to be outside, we’d often walk into town and visit the Youth Center. Because our parents insisted.
There were two really cool people at the Youth Center – the “cook” who made the fries and the older kid who showed us “fry sauce”. By mixing together mayo and ketchup you can obtain one of the most indulgent, delicious dipping sauces known to humanity. When he first told us about it, I thought he was lying. I legitimately thought he was trying to prank us seeing as he was a couple years older than us. That and he kept looking back at his friends and had this really suspicious grin on his face. I also really disliked mayo at that time. And anything new. But as soon as I decided to “show off” and be brave… I was pleasantly surprised. My life forever changed!
Now let me tell you an embarrassing story! Once, I went there and saw a friend working on one two? Four? Anyway, she was working on the computer typing up a report for school about Amelia Earhart. She had a friend working on the computer across from her typing a report on Eleanor Roosevelt. Trying to be friendly, I sat down and talked to her and tried to introduce myself to them. They, unsurprisingly, were not particularly happy to distracted but weren’t rude. Eventually I signed onto the computer next to them, and out of boredom, typed a “report” of my own smashing together their leading ladies’ stories. Without understanding they were two separate people.
I even asked my friend for her thoughts because I thought I was being oh so clever! What I had wanted her to comment on was my typing skills (it was something I was learning in school). Of course, my report was terribly inaccurate which she read aloud and she and her friend laughed about. Aw man, thinking back to it makes my cheeks sting with embarrassment! At the time I actually wanted to cry and later I shied away trying to find Steven so that we could leave.
We stopped going eventually. Steven and I heard some rumor about a kid who visited there that had stabbed someone with a screwdriver and I made sure to let my parents know. Other than eating fries, I didn’t really enjoy going there. Too many kids I didn’t know or care to know. Really loud. Things that didn’t sit well with younger me.
Do you have a special sauce that’s tied to your childhood? Have you ever tried recreating those if they weren’t readily available? Let me know below! Or let me know if you hate my recipe and think it is not the bees knees.