Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Cooking is Cheaper than Therapy: Slow Cooker Caramelized Onions

Last week I had a craving for "pissaladiere." What is pissaladiere, you ask? In short, it's a pizza with origins from southern France topped with lots of caramelized onions (Stay tuned for recipe next week). 

The one drawback to sooth my craving is it's hot outside and the last thing I want to do is stand over a stove. I remembered hearing about caramelizing onions in a slow cooker, so instead of following a recipe, I experimented. Success! 

As many of my recipes are, this one is "fool-proof." Also, no matter if you have three onions or six onions, just adjust the butter (or olive oil) and spices accordingly. Or if you want to eliminate the fats, no need for any butter or oil. The onions will cook via their own juices.

Now you can have your own main ingredient to pissaladiere, French onion soup, an accompaniment for burgers or grilled cheese sandwiches, additions to quick soups, and toppings for side dishes.  


Ingredients:

 3 - 6 White, yellow, sweets, or red onions, peeled and thinly sliced
     1 - 3 Tbsp butter (or olive oil or half butter/olive oil), depending how many onions
     Salt and pepper to taste
     1/2 Tbsp thyme (or Herbes de Provence)        
     Optional: 1 tablespoon of brown sugar, or 2 teaspoons of balsamic vinegar, or chili flakes

Layer in the slow cooker an average of one sliced onion. Add salt and pepper to taste, as well as the thyme. Keep layering. If you are using brown sugar, balsamic vinegar, or chili flakes; spread out for each layer and sprinkle these items in as well. 

Add to each layer the butter and/or olive oil - - or if you are watching your fat intake, don't add. 

Cook on low for 8-10 hours or cook on high for 4-5 hours, stirring once or twice if desired, until the onions are a rich golden brown and caramelized. If the onions are really juicy at this point, set the lid an inch or so ajar and let the juice boil down. If they are not to the desired juice you prefer, leave the lid on to seal in the moisture of the onions. Continue cooking until the onions have reached the desired texture and thickness of the liquid. 

These delicious caramelized onions will keep 2-3 days in the refrigerator, but why would you "keep" them? Eat them! 

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