The other day, a friend made balsamic strawberry jam, and her luscious
descriptions and photos sent me over the moon. I knew I had to try it.
But it wasn't strawberry season in middle Tennessee. I was still determined
to make a balsamic concoction, so I began poking around in my kitchen.
As I gathered crusty bread and fresh tomatoes, I began to crave a
bacon-tomato lettuce sandwich. Instead of dressing it with mayonnaise,
I decided to make a savory jam, something with a balsamic hint.
I found a plump red onion, apple-smoked bacon, and a new bottle of cherry balsamic vinegar.
Would it work? I wasn't sure; but if it didn't, I could always open a jar of Duke's Mayonnaise, right?
I started chopping and stirring. It took a bit of experimenting to find the
"Goldlilocks Zone," that
perfect balance of sweet and savory. At first, the jam was too tart. I added a touch of Dijon, Tabasco, and Bandwidth's homemade Worcestershire
Bacon-Red Onion Cherry Balsamic Jam
Quantity: 8 ounces
1/2 cup cooked, chopped applewood smoked bacon
1 large red onion, chopped
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon homemade Worcestershire Sauce
1/2 cup water
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
Tabasco, 4 drops (optional)
1/8 teaspoon onion salt
sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1/2 to 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar (I used Acetum's Cherry Balsamic)
2 four-ounce Ball jars
Prepare bacon. (I bake mine and pour the drippings into a heavy copper saucepan.)
Put saucepan on a low flame and add onions. Simmer until the onions are tender,
about 10 to 15 minutes. Stir often. In another bowl, add Dijon mustard, sugar, lemon juice, and water.
Whisk. Add salt, pepper, onion salt, and Tabasco. Pour mustard mixture into the
saucepan and stir. Reduce the liquid, about 20 minutes over a low flame.
Add balsamic vinegar and simmer another 15 minutes or so, until the jam thickens.
Stir frequently. Remove pot from flame. Pour into 2 4-ounce sterilized jars and add jam.
Place sterilized caps and rings on jar. Refrigerate after opening.
Adapted from a recipe at Fine Cooking.
contribution at Stone Gable.