Blackberry balsamic reduction adds a tangy sweetness to just about anything. Drizzle over everything from salad to steak to ice cream.
Noxious, thorny, and destructive Himalayan Blackberry vines are everywhere. For most of the year they are the bane of gardeners, property owners, and even pedestrians whose ankles have been attacked strolling past a vacant lot or hillside.
Balsamic vinegar is a traditional Italian condiment made from grapes and though it comes with the expected vinegar tang, balsamic vinegar is quite sweet. When you simmer balsamic vinegar with fruit, such as blackberries, the dominate vinegar flavor is tempered and infused with the flavors of the fresh fruit.
After about 30 minutes of gentle simmering the initially watery vinegar will have transformed into a velvety syrup.
Here are some ideas for dishes that you could use a balsamic reduction on:
- Grilled or roasted vegetables: add depth and flavor to roasted or grilled vegetables like asparagus, zucchini, bell peppers, or eggplant.
- Meat dishes: glaze grilled, roasted, or sautéed meats like chicken, pork, or beef. It can also be used to flavor stews or braises.
- Salad dressings: as a base for a homemade vinaigrette dressing, or added to store-bought dressings to give them a deeper, more complex flavor.
- Cheese plates: drizzled over a selection of cheeses for a simple yet sophisticated appetizer.
- Desserts: drizzle over fruit, ice cream, or chocolate for a sweet and savory contrast.
These are just a few ideas, but balsamic reduction can be used in many other dishes as well. Its versatility and rich flavor make it a great ingredient to have on hand in the kitchen.
Blackberry Balsamic Reduction
- 2 ½ cups blackberries fresh or frozen
- 1 ½ cups balsamic vinegar
- 2 tablespoons molasses
- Place all the ingredients into a large sauce pan and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Stir occasionally and mash the berries gently as they soften. Reduce heat as needed to keep the liquid from reaching a boil.
- Continue to simmer until the liquid has reduced to a little less than half the original volume. The vinegar should thickly coat the back of a metal spoon.
- Strain the reduction into a bowl through a fine mesh sieve. Stir and mash to work it through then discard or repurpose the remaining seeds.
- Store the reduction in a clean jar or glass bottle with a tight fitting lid. It should keep in the refrigerator for weeks.