Friend of the Boar (aka “FOB”) Jim Jackson posted a comment on our recent Fourth of July Tower of Pork post requesting that I share a sauce he enjoyed at a pork chop feast last summer. Some combinations just work. So it is for blackberries and pork. (And if you hurry there are still some fresh blackberries in the market). When blackberries are out of season, I substitute blackberry preserves.
Before I get too far with the sauce, I must acknowledge that as obvious (and painful) as it seems now, there was a time when the Boar was unaware of the complimentary nature of blackberries and pork. Another FOB, Thomas Shurgar, first introduced the idea by suggesting we use a blackberry syrup as a finishing sauce for baby back ribs. Eureka! Ever since, the Boar (and many a feaster) has been smitten with the combination--and my friend gloats that it was his genius.
Blackberry Sauce for Pork
Fresh blackberries (pint)
Onion (half of a small onion or use a shallot, chopped)
Garlic (three cloves, chopped)
Fresh rosemary (one sprig)
Fresh thyme (two or three sprigs)
Red wine (enough to deglaze pan, so a couple shots)
Olive oil (about two tablespoons)
Butter (two tablespoons)
Pour olive oil in a sauce pan over medium-low heat. Add butter and allow it to melt and brown slightly. Add onions, garlic, rosemary and thyme. Saute until onion is soft but not browned.
Deglaze pan with red wine. Add blackberries and enough water to cover the berries. Bring the mixture to a low simmer and cook until the berries are soft and mushy (20 to 30 minutes).
Remove the pan from the burner and allow to cool. Once cool enough to handle, puree the sauce in a blender or food processor. Strain the sauce if you don’t want the seeds (I usually strain the sauce —sometimes multiple times).
When you get ready to serve, heat the sauce in a pan over low heat. It will be very thin. If you want it thicker make a little corn starch slurry and add to sauce. To make sauce a bit richer add another tablespoon of butter. Sometimes, just for kicks, I add a dash of cayenne.
Join me in celebrating combinations that work and friends that tell us about them, my friend.