Onion Jam

Marie Speed and I have been friends for ages; we met while working on a museum committee together and a comfortable friendship evolved even though we're a generation apart. I don't see her as much as I used to, but we have lunch every now and then to catch up and there's always email. She's funny, talented, interesting and a very busy young woman. And why am I telling you all this? Because Marie is the editor of a marvelous quarterly foodie magazine entitled Florida Table.

About two years old now, it's filled with great food porn, tantalizing recipes, tips on entertaining, illuminating articles on food and chefs, wine advice, cutting edge kitchen ideas and of course, everything you ever wanted to know about Florida's restaurants. I posted something from this magazine last year: Peekytoe-Crab Salad.

Don't get me wrong, Florida Table is not a replacement for Gourmet and frankly, I  doubt it wants to be, but it is the kind of magazine you sit down and read cover to cover. And I always come away inspired. My old issues have post-it colors sticking out all over the place. It may say Florida in the title, but it's definitely not just for Floridians; recipes are recipes and this magazine has them in spades.

The most recent issue has arrived and it included a recipe that caught my eye right away because I've never made anything like it and can't imagine why. Onion Jam. The minute I saw it I thought: if this tastes as good as it sounds, it's going to become a favorite condiment.

So this week, I made onion jam. Unfortunately I am an onion weeper....I had to walk out of the kitchen a couple times to clear my eyes. And yes, I had a sharp knife and cold onions. Nothing works for me. However, it's a simple enough jam to make and I must admit, well worth the tears. It's made with my favorite red onion but don't let the word jam fool you. It does not end up too sweet and thick like a real jam. It's got a delicate slightly sweet buttery taste with a little bite, not hot or bitter. The onions are still there; they aren't cooked down to mush. This will keep, refrigerated and covered, for several weeks. All I can say is: on a hot dog, a burger, a steak sandwich, grilled cheese or even with some sharp cheddar on a cracker as an appetizer....Wow. Fabulous.

Onion Jam
From Florida Table, Spring Issue

2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 large red onions, chopped fine
1 teaspoon dried thyme
2 teaspoons salt
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup red wine
3 tablespoons honey
1 bay leaf


Melt the butter and olive oil in a heavy saute pan and add the onion, thyme and salt. Cook over medium heat until the onions are soft.

Deglaze with the wine and vinegar and allow to reduce briefly. Add the honey and bay leaf and simmer for another 30 minutes.

Remove the bay leaf.
Makes about 2 cups. Keep chilled, but serve at room temperature.

Does anyone have a sure-fire way to prevent onion tears?


  1. This sounds delicious to me and would be good on so many things...the options are endless. Hey have you tried those onion goggles? Not pretty but maybe they will work!

  2. Really? I mean... I'm a weeper too, but I'm no huge onion fan. If they aren't diced, I probably won't eat them, except for one vidalia sammie once in a blue moon...

  3. And, speaking of poached eggs, look at that beautiful cover! It sounds like a great magazine and how cool that you know the editor.

    I would love to try this recipe. I love onions and the other ingredients sound like that would be so good together.

    I've heard that running cold water in the sink next to where you're chopping the onions helps but I still don't think it's 100% effective. When I cut up onions, I always try to leave the root end intact for as long as possible - that does help a little.

    Thanks for the great recipe!

  4. Thanks for the tip on the mag. Onion jam sounds like something I would really like. I hear that putting onions in the freezer for about 15-30 minutes works - no tears.

  5. Onion jam sounds awesome, I'd love to try it! I cry when I cut onions too :)

  6. Hungry Dog: Never tried the goggles. Will look into it!

    Chan: This jam is oniony, but not too much. I was surprised.

    Susan: I know! I laughed to myself when I read your poached egg post!

    Judy: I'll try the freezer. And yes, it's a great magazine.

    Natasha: I'll let you know if someone comes up with a great idea to prevent it!

  7. My mom would love this! I need to look for this magazine, sounds interesting! I'm an onion crier too, I have to stop several time to blot my eyes so I can see! :0

  8. That is something I really like! That onion jam looks tasty! I bet it would be great with homemade hamburgers...



  9. Hi Barbara! Now this recipe seems so very useful...I love onions on, well, just about everything...this would be so handy to have to add some great flavor to a lot of foods...wonderful recipe to share!!!

    Thank you for your well wishes...feelin a bit better this week.

    :) T

  10. I have cut up a lot of onions, and have never shed a tear..and I don't know why! Get an onion dicer- there are a few on the market that chop chunks of onion in one pass!

  11. Is it sad that I'm still fixated on the Brisket Queen on the cover?

  12. What a wonderful thing to have in the fridge. I am sure you can use this onion jam to dress up so many dishes. And really, what doesn't taste more delicious with carmelized onions... okay, yes, maybe ice cream.
    *kisses* HH

  13. I adore savory jams - onion, tomato, anything! I have a shallot jam that I make to go on chicken liver toasts and it is amazing. This one looks delicious!

  14. Hi Barbara ~

    Lovin' the recipe and will be making it soon! Wondered about finding the magazine outside of Florida - I'd probably have to order a subscription online?

  15. I love the idea of onion jam. I'm an onion crier. I notice that if I have a fan blowing in the kitchen, I don't cry.

  16. I am a caramelized onion fanatic so I absolutely know I would love this. This magazine sounds great! I will have to keep an eye out for it.

  17. Perfect! I had a little trouble with my caramelized onions a few weeks ago, so I'm definitely trying this next week! As for the crying? I've heard it's all about not breathing through your nose, but I cry each and every time...

  18. I love the thought of having some of this in the refrigerator just waiting for all kinds of uses!

  19. I just love Florida Table Magazine - plenty of fabulous food porn! I also love the sound of the onion jam - I think I made something similar the other night when making the Caramelized Onion & Goat Cheese Canapes from "Savor the Moment." You top toasted French Bread slices with Goat Cheese & the caramelized onions. They were divine! I need to try this recipe - too. Thanks for sharing,

  20. yum, how interesting! I'm not sure I could convince my husband to eat this one, but I'm pretty sure I would love it!

  21. oh wow would be great in sandwiches

  22. excellent. i really only like onions when they're cooked to the point of oblivion, and this method takes care of that quite nicely. i would really enjoy this on any number of things--YES, hot dog, YES, burger, YES, cheese cracker, YES, spoon. :)

  23. I can smell and taste this jam. Onions are freaky when you have to peel them. I can never eat them raw, but in jam like this, yes!

  24. Barbara, you read my mind! Today I was longing for a juicy burger with bleu cheese and caramelized onion...but onion jam would be even better!

  25. No matter how much I cry while chopping onions, I still can't bring myself to wear goggles! Just look at the color on this jam...wow. I can think of so many uses for this. How delicious.

  26. Lyndsey: Some of the comments have given suggestions about the tears. Check them out!

    Rosa: Great with hamburgers!

    Tracey: I had some in the fridge and used it on 3 of 4 different things.

    BD: Will definitely look into that!

    Blonde Duck: Funny!

    HH: That's about it though!

    Apples and Butter: The shallot jam sounds delish! And a great idea for chicken livers.

    Smithbites: You can do it online or if you want, I can get you an address. It's only $10 a year.

    Mimi: Never thought about using a fan. I'll try that!

    Joanne: I doubt it's in stores outside of Florida. You'd have to order it online. Very reasonable price though.

    Lucie: Check out all the suggestiongs in comments. Perhaps one will work for us!

    Lisa: Me too...although it never lasts long!

    Stephanie: I knew you would know all about it!

    Megan: It's a great condiment...he might like it.

    Rebecca: It is!

    Grace: It was great with cheddar cheese on a cracker. YES!

    Anh: I have a little problem with them raw too.

    Faith: Yummy on a hamburger!

  27. Onion Jam is soooo good! I cheat and buy Boar's Head brand. It "makes" a panini. Really.

  28. Looks like a great magazine. I love cooking magazines! I will have to see if I can find it here...I doubt it.

    I want to try those onion goggles.

  29. I plan on canning something similar this weekend!

  30. This jam sounds like it would be wonderful on cheese crackers. Do think there is a way to do it, so that it will last like regular jellies and jams?

  31. I love onion jam! this looks great I will be giving this a try soon.

  32. the onion jam looks heavenly!Im bookmarking cos I can already imagine whats its goingot taste like! TQ...themagazine looks awesome too.

  33. I have made onion jam before to stuff kibbeh but I never added honey to it. Thanks for the idea.Great dish, love it.

  34. onion jam..I would love to try this.great tip on the magazine- it seems wonderful..great recipe


  35. I'm an onion weeper too! How wonderful to have this in the fridge all ready to use!

  36. Gotta try this Barbara. It sounds divine. I'm not an onion weeper so maybe it will not be too bad. I love this blog, dear friend.

  37. That magazine looks delicious - as does this onion jam!

  38. This does look like a fabulous condiment. My friend is an onion weeper, she pulses an onion through the processor.

  39. Dana: Didn't even know Boar's Head made an onion jam!

    Julie: You would have to order it online...but it's very inexpensive.

    Pam: Would love to know your recipe.

    Stella: Check it out with Pam, the comment above yours.

    Bryan: It's really good.

    Zurin: It's really a lovely magazine.

    Joumana: It's delicious.

    Sweetlife: The magazine is excellent. Order it online.

    Barbara: Hope you have been checking out all the comments. Lots of ideas to avoid tears.

    June: That is so sweet of you to say!

    Deborah: Both are!

    Christine: Great idea!

  40. Barbara, once again you've posted something I have to make! This looks and sounds like it would be good on any number of things. I will give it a go.
    Like Mimi, if I have the exhaust fan on I cry less.....Hope it helps!

  41. Sorry, can't help you with the tears but I'd sure like to know what works cos I'm a weeper too.

    My mum used to say to stick a piece of onion on the end of the knife - can't see how that would have worked except maybe as a knife guard so you don't knick yourself while wiping away the tears!

    That onion jam looks wonderful, would go really great with babrbecues too.

  42. I don't know. It looks a little like chutney. I'm not terribly keen on sweet & sour, or sweet(ish) with savory. My husband would love it though!

  43. Can I tell how much good this would do to me! It looks tempting that I want to grab it out of my monitor right away. I would probably pair these with Roti (our Indian Breads). Delicious!

  44. Blonde Duck: And back to you!

    Pam: I'll try the fan..don't know why I didn't think of it!

    Shaz: Yes, it would be great for BBQ's!

    Francesca: I am really not a sweet sour person either but have made two things in the last couple weeks that may change my mind. This onion jam and a rhubarb ginger compote.

    MD: This would be GREAT with roti!

  45. As a fellow onion weeper (and sometimes even worse with shallots!), I feel your pain! But this jam looks really delicious and definitely worth the tears. I think I could put this on just about everything...

  46. Yum I've never tried onion jam but it sounds amazing, thanks for the recipe and great pics

  47. Barbara, how lovely that you have such a nice friendship with someone so interesting - this looks wonderful Jam! Lucie x

  48. Wow. I have never heard of this... it looks... interesting!! I am not sure I would like it... but I think my hubby would LOVE it!! Well done!

  49. I'm absolutely making this. It sounds delicious and I love that it uses balsamic.

  50. Nancy: The tears were worth it!

    Brad: Hope you get a chance to make it.

    Lucie: She is great fun and I love lunching with her....which will take place next week!

    Amanda: Wasn't sure I'd like it either, but I did!

    Jan: Yes, it give it a nice balance.

  51. Barbara, this looks good! I can already think of many ways to use this! Thanks for sharing, can't wait to try.

  52. Hi Barbara, First time over on your blog. Onion jam looks good. Sure-fire way to stop onion tears ?...Don't know ... but I am an Indian and we cut atleast 4 to 5 onions everyday in our cooking if not more. My gran used to say that placing an onion peel on your head when you cut onions will stop the tears. Funny right? Try it out, might just work:))

  53. Hi Sweet Friend!

    I always enjoy my visits with you...You always have such beautiful and interesting recipes. I have never had, let alone heard of onion jam! It looks and sounds diving...I will give this a try!

  54. Hi Barbara,

    I love onion jam and have often made it, love it on cold meats and hamburgers.
    Oh yes, I am a crier too, making French onion soup the other day tears were streaming down my face.

    Enjoy the rest of the week

  55. Thanks for visiting me again. I had bookmarked your site and then my computer crashed and I lost all my info. So good to see your site again! The onion jam looks gorgeous and I'm busy dreaming of all kinds of possibilities with it!

    I love the rhubarb maple muffins below - a lovely combo!

  56. Hi Barbara, the onion jam looks wonderful and you gave us all so many great ideas on ways to use it. The Florida Table is one of my favorite magazines, I have to remember to subscribe to it. I only get it when we are down at the condo, I forgot about it until reading your post.
    Hope its warm down there, we are trying to get down in April, we have been skiing a lot lately but it is time for some relaxing and hopefully warm florida weather.

  57. I've never heard of Florida Table before, but I'm not much of a magazine reader, either. But it's nice to see that there are great magazines besides the big names out there!

    And oh, Lordie. That onion jam is screaming to be smeared on bread and grilled with cheese!

  58. Ahh brilliant! I just bought an onion marmalade and finished it and wanted more but the business that made it is no longer there. This is so timely Barbara! :D

  59. Onion jam! I love it with burger or steak sandwich :)

  60. Love onion jam with steak or burger, thanks for the recipe!

  61. I am a weeper but I love onions. This would be wonderful with some cheese!!

  62. Rylan: Congratulations again on being best in show!

    Anupama: I'm willing to try anything once!

    Karyn: Love your blog too, my friend!

    Carolyn: Perhaps one of the solutions in the comments will work for us!

    Kim: I hate it when that happens and it happens to all of us. I finally got Carbonite.

    Bunny: It's a lovely magazine and very reasonable.

    Sophia: Right...on grilled cheese, it's perfect.

    Lorraine: I think you'll find this is not as thick and jammy as the marmalade you used to buy.

    Ellie and Tummies: Me too!

    Maya: It's just right with cheese on a cracker!

  63. This look delicious Barbara! gloria

  64. wow! this is so creative and looks amazing!

  65. Hi, This is my first time here. I never see a onion jam before, look really interesting. I will visit you more often to check what you are cooking.

  66. Gloria: Thanks!

    Simply Life: It is amazing..so good with cheese AND meat.

    Sonia: Thank you so much for visiting!

  67. As soon as I get back home from our little winter spot, I'm ordering this magazine. The post office hasn't been forwarding my magazines and I am so sad.

    The onion jam is wonderful. I can see many uses for this.

  68. Yum! I have been wanting to try onion jam for a while now.

  69. Very absolutely delicious...have been wanting to try onion jam for awahile and now i have a fantastic recipe....
    cheers and happy day....

  70. Oh my dear Barbara, u so make me grin and my heart swell....love the way u said found u and am so so glad u found the site cute.....
    am still posting the drafts which are there on VSSF and yeah will leave a final post on VSSF when hop there,thats as soon as my laptop (6months old is fixed:-))) )
    Anyway my feeds for VSSF aint working ,did post there today but they simply refuse to update;-))))
    Thanx a ton and ur suc a doll sweety....

  71. You need those great onion goggles... they really do work for the onion oppressed! Beautiful recipe and homage to your friend's mag... wish I was in Florida!

  72. Now this looks seriously good. I wouldn't have even considered Onion Jam based on just the name - but I know the things you recommend are tried and true. And after I saw the photos, and read the recipe, I think my family would really enjoy this. Thank for teaching me something new today!

  73. Blonde Duck: Sent an answer to your comment section.

    Natashya: Me too and I'm so glad I did!

    VSSF: Don't you hate it when computers doublecross you?

    Deana: Going to try the fan first. I don't seem to have a problem with shallots. Odd.

  74. This onion jam looks gooey and delicious. I would love some on a slice of bread right now. It would make nice stuffing for a quiche.


  75. Hi Barbara
    Congratulations on your fantastic Blog, great work.
    I came by as Gloria from Canela`s Kitchen recipes is inviting people to pass by to visit your Blog.
    Well done.
    Your onion jam is absolutely fabulous, loved your photo.
    Wishing you a great weekend x

  76. Susan: I was surprised at how much I liked it.

    Nisrine: Never thought to put it in a quiche.

    Ana: Thanks so much for visiting! Come back!

  77. Barbara,
    A little trick I learned years ago: chew a piece of gum when you are chopping onions. It really works!
    - Kris

  78. I have never heard of onion jam but it sounds delicious! I am a onion weeper too, so I'm sure I'd have to leave the kitchen a few times if I made this!

  79. Onion jam sounds delicious!I would love to try it....I love caramelized onions.

  80. Onion weeper...you need the onion chopper at Ikea! You'ls till have to peel them but it does a good job of chopping them down. Great jam for burgers.....

  81. i was just drooling over the eggs benedict on the front cover.
    haha. havent heard of onion jam..
    but it looks amazing!
    sweated and browned onions are to die for.

  82. Kristin: Thanks! I will try that the next time I peel onions and hope it works!

    msmeanie: Let's try the gum trick and see!

    Kitchen Butterfly: Will try the gum first, then resort to the cutter. Wonder how the food processor would work?

    Muffins: It's a lovely magazine and yes the onions are delicious!

  83. Thank you Barbara, although I am not an onion lover I might actually try this.

    Now off to peruse your Spring Muffins.

  84. I think I would love this!!! Plus that publication looks amazing..thank you for sharing. xoxo

  85. Barbara, here in Belgium onion jam is served as a condiment with foie gras. I don't like foie gras, but I LOVE the onion jam. Yours looks nicer than some that I have bought. I'm drooling at the idea of a goat cheese tart with this on it!

    My way of avoiding onion tears is actually foolproof. --have someone else do it!

    LOL, thanks for this post.

  86. Clarity: I was sad to hear of Renee's passing. She will be missed.

    Koralee: The magazine is a bargain and well worth ordering.

    Kate: It would be great with a goat cheese tart and someone told me how wonderful it was with a chicken liver pate. Love your solution to no tears!

  87. I should make this... definitely. Yum! The magazine sounds great too!

  88. Oh do send me a jar of that lovely caramelized onion jam! It would be just perfect with a juicy sausage and mash!

  89. I have 4 little suprises for u on the link below .which jus might be the last at VAnillaStrawberrySpringfields co z i'll be moving to BSM soon....
    So do hop and see why i think u are a fantastic, creative blogger and my happy pals...cheers and so do hope u enjoy it too....

  90. This looks and sounds absolutely amazing, although I must admit, the thought alone of making it is already making my eyes water. I too am an onion weeper and it'd be interesting to put us both in the kitchen with that and see who cries more! Still, I admire your persistance and it must be a truly great recipe if you went through that so maybe I'll find the courage.

  91. Anita: It's a really good magazine!

    Vicky: It would be super with that!

    Vanilla: So many awards! Thank you so much!

    Vanessa: Some of the commentors had some great ideas; going to try chewing gum first...it's the easiest.

  92. Oh dear ,ur absolutely not boring...infact exactly the opp ...but as i sai ...all i want is for u to enjoy the 4awards the way u want them....and i didn do the 7facts myself but shall later :-))))
    happy sunday to u...

  93. Oh YUM! Lately, I've been hearing all these great things about how onions are so good for you. I've been trying to work more into my diet. You've posted this just in time!

    Things always taste better if you add a few tears to them, I say. :)

  94. Onion Jam would be my biggest nightmare..ha! I dislike onions so badly, that it's embarrassing. One of those childhood trauma stories Barbara. You know the one that in the day we couldn't leave the table without cleaning our plates; even though you may be there for hours?! But, boy do I have family members who would love this including all 4 of my children. I always cooked with onion flavor or if I used real onions I just wouldn't eat it. I always wanted my children to be able to eat them. Have you ever heard of anything so lame as an onion phobia? Hope you are doing well and wishing you a great rest to your week xx

  95. This sounds and looks delicious. I love onions and what a way top prepare them.

  96. Barbara, I had to tell you that I made this, and it is DELICIOUS! My father's on an onion kick, so I made it with him in mind. And, since he's watching his sodium, I cut the salt in half. But it was still very flavorful. Thank you!



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