So, my search for yet more flavorful gubbins which would allow me to merely drizzle dressing on my salad led me to a salad bar at my local Fresh Market. They have the most wonderful marinated cipollini onions which elevated my salad from tasty to sublime. Unfortunately, at $9.99 a pound, it’s a very expensive indulgence.
I continued the search and found a recipe on epicurious which was a restaurant recipe for a side dish to accompany chicken, pork, etc. It originally called for cipollini onions which turned out to be impossible to find. A reviewer mentioned the same difficulty and said she found frozen pearl onions from Trader Joe’s to be a good substitute. Off I went to Trader Joe’s, and the rest is history. They sell the onions in 1-lb. bags for $2. Since I go through a bag a week, I bought four bags last time I went!
These tiny gems will turn any salad from ordinary into dinner-guest-special. Throw in some goat cheese, dried cranberries, and glazed nuts, and you will end up with a signature salad as good as any upscale restaurant has to offer.
Braised Onions with Orange and Balsamic Vinegar
- 1 pound frozen pearl onions
- 1 tbl. butter
- 1 tbl. olive oil
- 3 tbl. orange juice
- 3 tbl. balsamic vinegar
- 1 tbl. water
- Salt and pepper to taste
Cook frozen pearl onions according to package directions and drain.
Melt butter with oil in large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add onions; sauté until brown and tender, about 10 minutes. Add orange juice, vinegar and 1 tablespoon of water to skillet. Reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer until liquid is reduced to glaze, about 4 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.