Cooking and Baking

Homemade sauces as gifts

Last night we had some friends over, and I tried to make a Blackberry Port reduction to pour over our pork chops. It was very tasty, although nothing like I was hoping for (I imagine the quality of the port has a lot to do with that, and I'll be experimenting!). It seemed like something that would be right up my FIL's alley, and it got me thinking that maybe I could make up a batch to give him as a gift this year for the holidays. Does anyone else make sauces/condiments as presents? I've never home-preserved food before, other than in the freezer of course, so I don't know if I could try canning this or if it would have to be frozen. I'd prefer to make this kind of thing now, before there stops being fresh produce in the markets, so I'm not breaking the bank on ingredients. Any thoughts or suggestions welcome! Here's the recipe I used, found in several different places online so I have no idea whose it actually is:

Beef Tenderloin with Blackberry Port Wine Sauce
Serves 4

4 beef tenderloin steaks, 4-6 ounces each, 1-inch thick
1 large shallot or small onion, finely diced
1 cup fresh or frozen blackberries, divided
2 cups port wine
1 tsp. sugar
2 cups beef stock
1 Tbsp. butter, softened

In a saucepan bring diced shallot, 3/4-cup blackberries, wine and sugar to a boil. Boil gently to reduce wine to 1/2-cup. Strain and set liquid aside. Boil beef stock in a separate pan to reduce by half. This will take approximately 15 minutes. Grill steaks or pan broil in skillet 6 minutes per side. Whisk blackberry and port wine reduction into reduced beef stock. If sauce is too thin, dissolve 1 tsp. cornstarch in water, then stir into sauce and bring to a boil.
Whisk in 1 Tbsp. softened butter. Serve steaks with sauce and garnish with remaining blackberries.

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