Makes 1½ cups

Heat and sweet combine beautifully in this barbecue sauce. And while it is wonderful on chicken or ribs, there’s no need to stop there. A dollop of this and a slab of blue cheese can turn a basic burger into a truly transformative grilling experience. To tame the heat a bit, don’t include the seeds or inner ribs of the jalapeño.

2 cups balsamic vinegar

½ cup strawberry jam

2 tablespoons tomato paste

1 large shallot, minced

½ fresh jalapeño, chopped

2 tablespoons Dijon mustard

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

Salt, to taste

1. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, combine the vinegar and jam. Bring to a simmer and cook until reduced to about ¾ cup. Stir in the tomato paste, shallots, jalapeño, mustard, olive oil and Worcestershire sauce. Simmer for another five minutes, then transfer to a blender and purée until smooth. Season with salt.

Nutrition information per 2 tablespoons: 90 calories; 10 calories from fat (11 percent of total calories); 1 g fat (0 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 0 mg cholesterol; 18 g carbohydrate; 0 g fiber; 15 g sugar; 0 g protein; 190 mg sodium.

J.M. Hirsch, The Associated Press