If you know me well, don’t die of shock when you see this post for Fried Onion Dip. If you don’t know, I have a deep loathing for onions. Always have. Probably always will. So you might be wondering why in the world I would make and post an onion dip. I have joined with a group of fellow cooking, baking and cookbook lovers in making our way through Amy Thielen’s new book, The New Midwestern Table: 200 Heartland Recipes. If you don’t know Amy, she also has a new show on the Food Network, Heartland Table. Check it out on Saturday mornings.
The first recipe that was chosen for the group to make from Amy’s book was Fried Onion Dip. There is no requirement for making any of the recipes, it’s all just for fun and whenever we can or would like to make one of the chosen recipes that will be two times a month. But I felt bad and was so torn to not participate on the first one. So I talked myself in to frying some onions to make this dip. I have never enjoyed any of the aspects of onions, the taste, the smell, cutting them, the lingering smell, what they do to your breath, all of it. My mom has always teased me that someday when I grow up I’ll like them. Well, I’m cough, cough—almost 44—and still no-likey. I have tried. I consider it an aversion much like one of my best friends HATING nuts (unfathomable to me), or one of my sons not liking chocolate (despicable!).
That said, I do put onions in salsa, but I only like the very non-chunky, super pulverized kind. And I HAVE grown up somewhat from my youth, where I used to pick every little piece of onion out of everything I ate, you couldn’t hide them small enough—I’d find them and be able to taste them. I don’t do that anymore, so give me some credit for that, Mom. ;) While living in Kansas over three years ago, I had the pleasure of taking some wonderful cooking classes from Paige at For Love of the Table. (She should have her own cooking show!) There I chose to eat the things she cooked and I learned that I can handle shallots and that I’m not going to die eating onions. Can I now say I like them? No. But I don’t go out of my way to pick them out of food I’m eating that has onions. AND I can even be found chopping up a shallot to add to certain sauces I’m making. Shallots ARE in the onion family. Go me.
Kevin loves onions. He has had to really sacrifice by not eating onions because I don’t cook with them hardly ever and because as he likes to tell people “he doesn’t want to sleep on the couch tonight”. Poor guy. I have always told him he can eat all the onions he wants when we go out to eat, but he will often give up those onions rings or whatever so he can sleep in our bed. Aw!
This dip, which you can get the recipe for by buying Amy’s book, The New Midwestern Table, is first made by clarifying butter, which is one of the reasons I decided to make it as I’ve never clarified butter before. Mmm, butta! The onions are then fried in the butter until they brown and even start to crisp. This is not the same as caramelizing onions, which is done at a lower temperature—low and slow. I know many would say that is such a great aroma. It is not one I enjoy. My house smelled of onions for two days. I lived.
Are they done yet? Not quite. At this point, some wine or vermouth would be added and thickened with a little honey. Since I don’t use alcohol, I used a little chicken stock. Works just fine! I do that with most recipes that have alcohol. Sometimes I use fruit juice, too. There’s garlic added, too. I don’t have a problem with garlic, but I do not enjoy the smell either one leaves on my fingers and have never really found a remedy for getting rid of it.
Ahh, the onions are done. Cooled. Chopped finely, then added to a cream cheese and sour cream mixture, which I used lite for both. There you have it—Fried Onion Dip.
And I decided to make some homemade baked chips to serve with it. I made some potato chips and sweet potato chips. And yes, I tasted the dip—just making sure to not get any of the onion bits. I even had more than one bite. I served the dip to the boys for dinner with some sandwiches. They all ate some of it except Sam, my youngest. Kevin enjoyed it and ate most of it.
There you go, onion dip. Get Amy’s book. I’m excited to stretch myself and try some new recipes. Yes, those chopped, green herbs on top should be chives, but I didn’t have any, so they are the last of my indoor, fresh parsley. Next recipe—on my birthday, November 15—Corn Fritters with Green Chile Buttermilk Dip.