Pearl onions are one of those things you either love or hate - not a lot of middle ground here. I personally do not prefer them, but my husband does and I do prefer him. So come Autumn, when they are at their most fresh and delicious peak, I always pick out a few bags and bring them home with me.
Now, the tricky part about pearl onions is prepping them. Teeny tiny onions with thin papery skins can make one bitchy chef. I advise buying them fresh and already peeled or purchasing the frozen brands which are also pre-peeled. If not, swallow a valium and have at it - plan on adding an extra 20 - 30 minutes to cooking time. Basically you cut an 'x' in each onion, blanch them for 1 minute, let them cool, and peel away.
This recipe comes from the back of the Trader Joe's fresh peeled onions I picked up this week. It is a quick recipe, and despite my prejudice, kind of tasty. Enjoy every bite.
2 tbsp olive oil
6 oz pearl onions, peeled
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 - 1 and 1/2 cups vegetable or chicken broth (I used vegetable)
Salt and pepper to taste
1 pat of butter
Sprig of fresh thyme
- Place oil in medium skillet and heat on medium. Add onions and saute until just brown, approximately 10 minutes.
- Add vinegar and continue to saute until sauce becomes a rich brown.
- Add broth to cover the onions halfway. Stir to incorporate. Bring to a simmer.
- Partly cover pan and lower heat. Continue to simmer and braise for 15 - 20 minutes.
- Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Add butter and thyme; stir until incorporated. Remove from heat and serve.