Some jams, like strawberry, and blackberry, make delightful gifts. Everyone knows what to do with sweet jams... spread them on toast, scoop a little bit out over vanilla ice cream, make a peanut butter and jam sandwich, or use them to make cookies. But if you make a savory jam, you may want to keep plenty of jars set aside for yourself. Savory jams make great appetizers! Something that I know for certain: If you bring a jar of homemade savory jam and a block of cream cheese (or some brie, if you want to get super fancy) to a get-together, it will be the only appetizer of it's kind at the party. Add some crackers or vegetables for dipping, and your contribution to the party is ready with little or no work. Homemade! And unique! Serve softened cream cheese in one little bowl, and jam in another. Or place cream cheese on a pretty plate and scoop jam out on top. Either way, this one's a star!
Whether you're a veteran canner or a newbie, the Ball Blue Book is an awesome resource. If you enjoy home canning it will be one of the most worn books on your shelf. There is a nice recipe for Red Onion Marmalade in the Ball Blue Book. It's tasty! But I change a couple little things, (maintaining it's acidity) to make this savory jam...Bonus! Bring an extra jar to give to the party host! "Sweet!" Um, I mean, "Savory!"
CRANBERRY ONION JAM
(adapted from "Red Onion Marmalade" from the Ball Blue Book of Preserving)
Makes about 5 half pints
1 1/2 cups diced red onions
1/2 cups finely chopped dried cranberries
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup cider vinegar
1 package powdered pectin
3 cups bottled unsweetened apple juice
4 cups granulated sugar
Saute onions, cranberries, brown sugar and cider vinegar in a large non-reactive sauce pot over medium heat until onions are transparent. Add powdered pectin and apple juice. Bring to a boil over medium high heat. Add granulated sugar, stirring until dissolved. Return to a rolling boil. Boil hard for one minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Skim foam if necessary. Ladle hot jam into hot half-pint (or smaller, 4 ounce) jars, leaving 1/4 inch headspace. Adjust two-piece caps. Process 15 minutes in a boiling water canner (adjust processing time for your altitude).