It’s no secret that I love crostini. Put a little deliciousness on a toasty piece of bread and it’s one of my favorite things in the world. It’s easy to prepare and makes you feel fancy, which is a win-win in my book.
I’ve recently decided we should add a weekly crostini-and-salad night to our regular cooking schedule, kind of like people do Taco Tuesdays or Friday night pizza. (Great idea, right?? Who’s with me for crostini night? So many possibilities!)
So for the inaugural crostini night (still not sure what day of the week we’re landing on) I wanted to make a recipe using steak and blue cheese.
But I realized it needed a little extra something on top to balance out the savory, pungent flavors of the other ingredients. It needed a nice, gourmet jam — preferably with some balsamic vinegar or a little red wine in it. And caramelized onions.
My husband (who I’ve nicknamed the Blueberry Monster for his insatiable love of the fruit) suggested adding blueberries. Sounded good to me!
You may think blueberries and onions sound strange together, but sweet and savory jams have seen a huge increase in popularity in the last few years. They actually work really well together, in the right context!
So while this blueberry and red onion jam recipe is not what you want to put between layers of a cake, it’s ohhhhh so good paired with some red meat or blue cheese. I’d use this jam for burgers or serve it with a fancy cheese board.
How to make savory blueberry and red onion jam
I started by caramelizing some finely diced red onion with a few sprigs of fresh thyme to bring out the natural sugars. I chose red onion for its comparatively sweet flavor, the jamminess it has when cooked down, and the red-purple coloring that would add to the lovely hue of the berries.
Once the red onion was caramelized, I added the blueberries, along with some balsamic vinegar, honey, brown sugar, and red wine. After a few minutes of simmering, the vinegar and wine are reduced, and the blueberries are tender and ready to pop. I popped the blueberries, added just a splash of lemon juice, and gave it a good stir. It was a little syrupy when warm, but it thickened up nicely in the fridge!
The end result was a luscious blueberry and red onion jam with a well-balanced and decadent sweet-and-savory flavor. Just what I had envisioned! It was sweet enough to contrast with the blue cheese but with all kinds of complex and savory undertones.
Blueberry and onion jam uses
So what do you do with this unique blueberry and caramelized onion jam recipe? Here are a few ideas to get you started:
- Use as a topping for burgers
- Add to a cheese board (especially good paired with blue cheese!)
- Top crostini (like this blue cheese and steak crostini!)
- Use as a sauce for pork chops or grilled chicken
- Use as a spread for a turkey or ham and cheese sandwich
- Add to bbq sauce
- Spread over cream cheese for a party dip
- Slather over biscuits or on fried chicken
- Top a cornbread waffle
- Spread it on savory scones
For more delicious crostini ideas, check out these recipes:
- Blue cheese and steak crostini with blueberry and caramelized red onion jam
- Fig and olive tapenade crostini with walnuts
- Crostini with brie and fresh blackberries
- Ricotta crostini with blueberries, walnuts, thyme, and honey
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 medium red onion diced (about 2 cups)
- several sprigs fresh thyme
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper
- 2 cups blueberries
- 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 1/4 cup honey
- 2 tbsp brown sugar
- 1/4 cup red wine
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- In a Dutch oven, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onion, salt, pepper, and thyme, and reduce to medium low. Cook for 30 -35 minutes or until caramelized, stirring occasionally.
- Add blueberries, vinegar, brown sugar, honey, and red wine and cook until berries are enlarged and about to burst and liquid is reduced, about 5-10 minutes. Add lemon juice and stir, smashing berries. Remove thyme stems.
- Remove from heat and cool to room temperature. Spoon into a clean jar and refrigerate until thickened. Use to top crostini or burgers.