Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Magic! How to get 4 Onions into one jar.

Sometime ago I was picking up some stuff in a supermarket in England when I spotted a jar of ‘Caramelised Onions’. Hmmm… nice idea, I thought and brought them home to my Greek island.

4 medium Onions. 1 small jar
When the jar was opened, they disappeared so quickly that Christiane and I were left rueing the idea of having to wait until our next trip to abroad; or at least to one of the big supermarkets in Athens for another jar.

Not so! They are actually very easy to make……

For the jar in the picture I use 4 medium size onions.

Peel and chop them fairly coarsely.

Use a lightly oiled frying pan that is large enough to spread them out on and cook on a medium heat. You need to turn the onions from time to time to stop them catching and burning on the pan but try not to do this too often otherwise they don’t brown nicely. I usually check them every 10 minutes or so.

Seasoning. I use honey for the caramelising but I guess plain old sugar will do the job too. One good teaspoon of honey per onion and I add this after they have been cooking for 15 minutes. Add the honey straight into the pan and stir it in.

The whole cooking process takes around an hour although this does vary according to the onions so do keep an eye on them. If it looks like they are cooking too fast then turn the heat down a little; they need that time on the heat to really soften and brown.

After about 45 minutes I add the final ingredient; a couple of teaspoons of Balsamic vinegar. This helps to deglaze the pan, adds a little more colour and a twist to the flavour too.

Test the onions as the time ticks by and they soften and occupy less and less of the pan. Try to leave some for later and for guests though!

When you are happy with the result, remove the pan from the heat, allow to cool and then spoon the onions into a jar.

They are just great with cheese, in an omelette or a salad and adding a spoonful can just transform anyone of a host of savoury dishes. Be bold and experiment!
Da da!

Keep them in the fridge. How long you can store them? That is something I cannot answer. I read somewhere that they would keep for a week. I have no idea if that is true because for me, actually the real magic is just how quickly those onions disappear from the jar!