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The 3 Canners were looking forward to this edition of the 2010 Can Jam, we had experimented with some pickled onions a few months ago and the results were great. This time around we decided to up the challenge and we decided to do Onions Two Ways. The first being Spicy English Style Pickled Onions and then we decided to do a small batch of Caramelized Onion Jam.

We have added a two new features to our Can Jam blog entries. First, we think every good Can Jam Session needs music so as a new added feature, we also thought we would toss out some exerts from each Jam Session Playlist. Drop us a comment and let us know yours…

Onion Jam Session Playlist
Cryin’ Over You – Platinum Blonde
Don’t Dry From Me Argentina – Madonna
Cry Me A River – Justin Timberlake
Don’t Cry – Guns’n’Roses
Who’s Cryin’ Now – Journey
All I Could Do Was Cry – Etta James

Second, we always plan at least one afternoon and evening for our jam sessions. After a few hours of cutting, chopping and canning, the Canners get hungry, so we take turns making something in the slow cooker to celebrate our final product with. We have now added the Dinner Feature, that will let you in on what’s on the menu for each session. If you’re interested in the recipe for it drop us a comment as well.

Now on with the rest of the ‘Battle Onion’…here are some shots from Onions Two Ways, Two Days.

For those of you that want to try these ones out…the recipes are below as well.

Spicy English Style Pickled Onions

5 lbs Sweet Small Onions
5L Brown Malt Vinegar
5 tbsp Black & White Peppercorns
5 tbsp Red Chili Flakes
5 tbsp Coriander Seeds
5 tbsp Mustard Seeds
15 Whole Cloves
12 Large Green Chili Peppers
Salt

Night One
Open a bottle of red wine and pour a glass for yourself and anyone else who is helping. Boil a large pot of water and add a generous amount of salt. Once the salt is dissolved, take it off the heat and let it cool right down. We put it outside.

Trim and peel the onions. You can keep a small bit of the stem on the onion, this stops the onions from separating. Add the onions to the cold salt water and leave overnight, holding the onions underwater with a heavy plate. This process will make for a more crunchy final product. Finish the bottle of wine and enjoy the rest of your night smelling like onions.

Day Two
Pour yourself a nice Bloody Ceasar, then put the vinegar and spices into a large saucepan. Bring to the boil and simmer for five minutes – no longer, otherwise the vinegar will evaporate. Take the saucepan off the heat and leave it, covered, to cool right down. If you add hot brine to the jars it will make for a much softer onion.

Strain the vinegar to remove the spices.

Rinse off the onions and pack the onions into clean jars and pour in enough of the spiced vinegar to cover them. You can put one or two of the chilis in the jar with the onions if you like them VERY fiery!

Seal the jars in a hot water bath as directed.

Store the jars of onions in a cool dark place and leave for at least 30 days.

Caramelized Shallot Jam

1/8 cup Butter
1 lb of  Shallots Рsliced
1 cup firmly packed Brown Sugar
1 cup Brown Malt Vinegar
1 tbsp Fresh Rosemary – finely chopped

Take a sip of your wine, if you don’t have one…get one.

Melt butter in a large pan, add onion, cook, stirring about 20 minutes or until onions are very soft and lightly browned.

Add brown sugar, stir over low heat until sugar is dissolved. 
Simmer uncovered, stirring occasionally, until mixture is thick and caramelised.

Add vinegar, simmer uncovered, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes (a half glass of wine), or until mixture is thickened slightly.

Stir in rosemary. Finish off the wine.

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