Before I came to New Zealand I had only vaguely heard of Kiwi chef Peter Gordon. From articles that popped up every so often in the English newspapers that I read, I knew that he cooked at The Sugar Club (still, I think, a truly brilliant name for a restaurant) and that he was designated king of what became known as fusion cuisine. That all changed when I made my first batch of his Tomato and Chilli Jam. Now he is known as the person responsible for coming up with the recipe of this addictive addition to sandwiches, sausages, noodles, patés, cheese, cold meats or just about anything that needs a little zip. I discovered it through an article in Cuisine magazine and you’ll find the recipe right here.
It’s not difficult to make, even if you don’t have a blender. I just chop everything up as small as possible and throw it all in together. Don’t be tempted to leave out the Asian fish sauce (aka nam pla). It may smell disgusting when you open the bottle but it really adds depth to the flavour. The first time I made this Tomato and Chilli Jam was during the autumn glut of tomatoes. They didn’t cost too much and, most importantly, were ripe. If you make it during the winter as I did the last time (we ran out – I was desperate!) you’ll be simmering the mixture for far longer than 30-40 minutes but it will eventually come together in the end. Well worth spending a Saturday morning on.