Finally! We moved, but it’s not all smooth sailing yet. We’re living out of boxes and we don’t have a kitchen yet. While our perfect kitchen is being built (which we will be talking about soon), I’m going to have to get crafty. I do have many plug-in appliances (rice cooker, toaster oven, panini press, waffle maker, microwave, etc.) so we’re still going to have a ball here. I think we’re going to be pleasantly surprised with how much I (or you) can do without a kitchen. (Gulp) Determined to eat well every single day without exceptions, here goes…

I was late to the slow cooker band wagon. In my defense, the only appliances I ever saw my mother use was a rice cooker, a toaster oven, and a microwave. We didn’t have a blender, no food processor, no stand mixer, all things I consider essential today. I’ll admit to an over indulgence in kitchen items I really don’t need. We have a deli slicer, a panini press, a waffle maker, an ice cream maker, a grinder attachment, to name a few excesses, but I do use them. Yet, I may never have known the joys of a slow cooker, if it hadn’t been for a fortunate alignment of events and situations.

I’m pretty sure I would never have bought one, being that I didn’t really know what the advantage was. But, a few weeks ago, someone gave my mother a slow cooker, and my mom didn’t know what to do with it. Most of her cooking is done on the stove. She barely even touches the oven. She begged me to take it and considering my lack of kitchen right now, I thought, heck, this may be helpful…and that’s how this love story begins.

Vidalia Onions 4

Our first date included Kielbasa and Beans, where I became a bit smitten with an otherwise unattractive table top appliance. Wide and heavy set was overlooked when an effortless dump and stir with minimal chopping filled my kitchen with a lovely aroma. A week later, Lon made an oxtail chili. Though not perfect, we were developing an affection for our new family member.

When I wanted Caramelized Onions, I thought I was lost without my kitchen. I’ve done it on the stove top for years, where you have to be patient and watch your pan. As if a light bulb went off, I realized it was the perfect thing to try in the slow cooker. You want them to cook slowly over a low heat anyway, and this method requires less butter. It was so easy and effortless, and now I am madly in love with my slow cooker.

If you don’t already know the joys of caramelized onions, it’s that magical topping that makes nearly everything better. Glorify your burger, decorate a pizza, or enhance a simple sandwich. It adds a natural sweetness, some moisture, and an extra layer of texture. That’s why I would make such a large amount. It keeps well in the fridge, and now you’ve got a versatile homemade condiment. Stay tuned for what we do with this batch.

Caramelized Onions

Caramelized Onions
~about 7 cups

  • 5 lbs Vidalia Onions or other sweet onions
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into 8 pieces

Instructions –

1. Peel and slice onions into 1/4″ slices. It doesn’t matter which way you slice them.

Vidalia Onions 2

2. Place onions and butter into a 6 quart slow cooker. Set it on low for 14 to 16 hours, on until onions are soft and dark brown.

Sliced Vidalia Onions and Butter

3. Store in an airtight container in the fridge and use as an addition or topping on many things.

Caramelized Onions 2

posted by jessica at 09:45 PM Filed under Basics, French, Recipes, Universal. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.