Saturday, October 22, 2011

Port Balsamic Vinegar Jam

Exciting... Well, maybe not SO exciting that it merits a huge font; however, just the name of this jam had my creativity going.  I saw it and thought: "Interesting flavors in a jar". Being one that loves to experiment with *interesting*, I just knew I had to make this.

The recipe is relatively easy to follow. I always read through a new recipe a few times before actually attempting to do it.  One of my favorite tweeples on Twitter @exceptionalfoods highly recommended thoroughly reading a recipe two or three times. While it may SEEM rather elementary, it isn't. How many times have you given a cursory glance to something, then accidentally omitted a critical ingredient? :::gulity:::

I acquired this recipe from

  • 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar or white balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 cup strips orange rind
  • 3 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 cups port or white port
  • 1 pouch liquid pectin
In small saucepan, simmer vinegar and orange strips until reduced to 1/4 cup. Cover and let steep until cool. 

Meanwhile, in a bowl, cover 4 canning jar discs with hot water; set aside.

Strain vinegar into large saucepan; stir in port and sugar. Bring to a boil over high heat, stirring constantly. At rolling boil, cook for 1 minute. Remove from heat; stir in pectin, mixing well.

Pour mix into hot 1-cup (250ML) canning jars, leaving 1/4-inch headspace. Wipe jars, cover with prepared discs. Screw on bands until resistance is met; increase to fingertip tight. Boil in  boiling water canner for 10 minutes. Let cool on rack. Check that lids curve down. 

The NEXT time I prepare this recipe, here are the adjustments I will make:
  • 3/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 cup strips orange rind
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 cups port
  • grated orange rind
Following the same directions as above, I want to increase the vinegar, decrease the sugar. In my initial batch, I thought the sweetness of the port to provide more than enough "sweet".  The sugar is needed for texture and consistency. I also will seep the vinegar and orange strips longer than 45 mins (until cool). I want to add some grated orange rind to the actual mix for sparkle, color and a tinge of flavor. 

This jam will be perfect on cheddar cheese biscuits, or served along side a corned beef or some equally salty beef. Please feel free to post any of your suggestions, too!

Happy Cooking!

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