We tend to eat a lot of onions. They seem to go with everything and I just love their flavor and versatility. My favorite are caramelized onions. It’s amazing how a vegetable that causes you to cry while slicing it can transform into something sweet and sticky, just by giving it some time (and a little olive oil and butter). Yes, I did use a little butter in this recipe, but if you’re opposed, just go with straight olive oil. The key to a great caramelized onion is patience. I actually made these early in the day and refrigerated them for later. You can make them several days in advance when you are going to be around the house for a couple of hours. They don’t take a lot of effort, just a lot of time. But believe me, it’s time well spent. I was inspired to make these by my neighbor, Nicole, who has a great cooking blog, with amazing photos of the caramelizing process. I cut a few things out of her recipe to make them paleo-friendly, and I can’t imagine them tasting any better. Yum! When you make these, you’ll have enough for two meals: pork tenderloin with caramelized onions and burgers with butternut squash and caramelized onions.
Adapted from thegalleygourmet.net.
- yellow or red onion - 2 1/2-3 pounds
- pastured butter - 2 Tbsp
- extra virgin olive oil - 1 Tbsp
- sea salt - to taste
- water - 1/4 cup
- Peel onions and remove both ends. Cut in half, with the grain. Following the grain of the onion, slice in thin slices. Repeat until all onions are sliced.
- In a large skillet or saute pan, melt butter over medium heat. Add olive oil and rotate pan to cover bottom with oil/butter mixture.
- Add onions and stir carefully for 10 minutes. The pan will be very full. Season with salt. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, for 1 hour.
NOTE: I had to run out during my caramelizing process so I just turned off the burner and let the onions sit, covered, for about an hour. No harm done! I just picked right up where I left off and they turned out great.
- Increase the heat to medium high and continue to cook, stirring more frequently, for about 30 minutes or until the onions have browned and caramelized.
- Add water to the pan and deglaze by scraping up any browned bits. Continue to cook over low heat until most of the moisture is cooked off.
NOTE: Caramelized onions can be stored in refrigerator for several days in an airtight container.