Caramelized onions take a long time, in my opinion. Preserved Onion Marmalade places caramelized onions right at your finger tips – ready to use!
And if you really think about it, caramelized onions can be used in almost anything, which makes Preserved Onion Marmalade the perfect ingredient to have on hand at all times.
The process is much like any other preserving method and takes time – like all good things – am I right? You’ll most certainly want to give yourself a Saturday morning to prepare these bad boys. From start to finish, you’re looking at roughly 4 hours. Now, time is precious, I know, but think of the advantages to having caramelized onions on hand whenever you need them.
Preserved Onion Marmalade can most certainly act as a jam, like the word marmalade suggests, however, there are many more options as well. For example, you could grill some crusty bread, smear it with a little ricotta and onion marmalade for a quick appetizer.
Grab some pre-made focaccia or artisan flatbread the next time you’re in a bind for dinner. Spread some of the Preserved Onion Marmalade on top, and crumble over some goat cheese. Bake it for about 20 minutes at 350 degrees for a great homemade pizza option.
Making anything with potato for dinner? Stir some into your mashed potatoes, or top a baked potato with a dollop of these onions along with some sour cream for a great side.
If you’re frying mushrooms, toss the cooked mushrooms with a few of these onions for a great topper for a grilled steak or pork chop. You see, Dear Reader, there are so many delicious possibilities. Don’t even get my started on dips that you can make with these preserved onions – onion dip (cold or hot baked), hummus, etc.
I encourage you to take a few hours of your time to whip up a few jars of this. It will surely save you time in the long run. And, if you’re lucky enough to live near a farmers’ market, you can pick up five pounds of onions for less than $5! The remaining ingredients for this recipe are no doubt already in your pantry or fridge. You have nothing to lose, right!?
Preserved Onion Marmalade
- 5 pounds onions, peeled and thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 teaspoon dried red chili flakes, optional
- 1 cup brown sugar, loosely packed
- 1/2 cup white vinegar
- 1 cup orange juice
Saute the onions in the olive oil over medium heat for 1 hour. There are a lot of onions, so use a very large non-stick skillet or a large Dutch oven. Do not cover - the onions will lose a lot of moisture and you want that to evaporate during the cooking process. Stir often!
Add the garlic and saute for 20 more minutes.
Reduce the heat to medium low and add the dried chili flakes, brown sugar, vinegar, and orange juice. Stir well to combine.
Continue to slow-cook the onions for an additional two hours. Stir often and watch the moisture level in the pan. If the onions begin to dry out, remove the pan from the heat immediately and begin the canning process. Otherwise, continue to cook until most of the moisture has evaporated and the onions turn a golden brown.
Pack the onions into sterilized mason jars. I like to use a metal funnel to avoid any of the onions coming into contact with the rim of the jar. This will help to create a better and safer seal. Fill the jar leaving at least 1/4-1/2 inch headspace. Remove the funnel and place a warmed, sterilized seal on the jar. Screw on the lid until just snug. Be careful! The jar will be hot! Use a kitchen towel to hold the jar in place as you screw on the lid.
Using a jar lifter, place the filled jars into the large pot of boiling water. Be sure the jars are not touching the bottom of the pot. This might cause the jar to break. I use a circular cooling rack that fits right into the bottom of my pot. (If you have a canning pot with a wire jar rack, then you won’t need to worry about this.)
Bring the pot back to a boil and allow the jars to remain in the boiling water for 20 minutes.
Carefully remove the jars and place on a kitchen towel where they will not be disturbed. As the jars cool, you’ll hear a popping sound. This is the hot liquid and air in the jar cooling down and contracting. This will create an air-tight seal and will allow you to store your onions for future consumption.
Makes five 250ml jars - serving size is 1 tablespoon.