I was finally able to retire the uber-traditional creamed onions from the Thanksgiving table with the advent of this recipe, but not without a great deal of resistance from the aunts and uncles. The first time I made it, I tried to slip it quietly onto the table and conceal it behind the mashed turnips. Naturally, no one was fooled. The chatter stopped immediately. Lifted glasses of wine were halted in mid-air. Parents quickly covered their children's eyes. (Ok, I made that last part up.) But every single one of them was just ... staring. What?? No creamed onions??!! From their expressions, you would have thought I was making them eat lutefisk instead of turkey. It took two passes around the entire table before Aunt Inga, who was well onto her third glass of chardonnay by then and had missed the first couple of go-rounds, took a spoonful, more or less by accident. After tasting it, she then proceeded to yell at everyone for being such hidebound traditionalists and how they should stop it and it was delicious even without the cream and cheese and the bread crumbs, and so on, although her choice of words was much more colorful. Anyway, the glazed onions are now a fixture. But was a long time before I was brave enough to start tinkering with the mashed turnips ... —wssmom
Test Kitchen Notes
If you're shopping around for a light and easy counterpart to heavy holiday sides, this is your dream recipe. Between the tartness of the cider vinegar, the sweetness from the honey and the richnees of the butter, the onions end up coated in sweet and sour glaze goodness. - Andrea —The Editors
- Serves 8
2 pounds fresh cippolini onions (preferred) or small boiling onions
2 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons of your favorite honey
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoons sherry, such as Dry Sack
salt and pepper
parsley for garnish
- If using fresh onions, blanch in boiling water for about a minute; drain, rinse, cool, and slip off skins. If you must use frozen onions, add to boiling water for a few minutes; drain, and proceed.
- Over medium heat, melt butter in a 12-inch, steep-sided skillet (or a cast-iron pan) and stir in the honey, apple cider vinegar and sherry until combined.
- Add onions and enough water to cover, bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer until the liquid has reduced to a glaze, about 20-25 minutes.
- Salt and pepper to taste and garnish with some chopped parsley.