Is this a Who Knew? recipe, as in, Who knew we could make onion dip from scratch? The Yes, of course! answer is so obvious but never before did it occur to me to make real onion dip.
It's the Cool Whip Syndrome, I think. When my mother was teaching Home Economics, she overheard a student report that 'real Cool Whip' -- meaning real whipped cream -- tasted so good. But if Cool Whip is so easy, so convenient, why bother to make real whipped cream?
To my taste, this homemade Onion Dip is completely delicious. It's all about the smoky earthy onion flavor, thanks in part to my upping the proportion of onions:binder. I did make a tactical error, however, by sautéeing the onions with a tablespoon of brown sugar, something that works like gangbusters for fajitas but contributed an unnecessary sweetness to the dip. In addition, when it comes to choosing onions to use for the bean dip (or anything else, for that matter), don't be tempted to use 'sweet onions' such as Vidalia onions or Walla Walla onions, which are wonderful raw but fall flat once cooked.
Tonight I'm taking the Onion Dip to a special potluck of two book clubs where we'll discuss the Michael Pollan book, The Omnivore's Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals. This is my second time through the book; I am newly convinced that it is the Silent Spring of food. Someday, I believe, we'll recognize that this book created the tipping point that changed our expectations, our demands, to banish late 20th century Cool Whip and supermarket onion dip food products to return to real food made from whole ingredients.
HOMEMADE ONION DIP RECIPE
Time to table: 3 hours
Makes about 2 cups
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 large onions, chopped, about 4 cups
1/2 cup mayonnaise (low-fat Hellman's is perfect but the inspiring recipe called for 3/4 cup)
1/2 cup sour cream (or 3/4 cup if you like)
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
Horseradish to taste (I used about a tablespoon of mild horseradish)
Fresh garlic to taste (I used a teaspoon of minced garlic)
Salt & pepper to taste
Heat the olive oil on MEDIUM HIGH in a large kettle until shimmery. Add the onions and stir to coat with fat. Cook, stirring every so often, until the onions darken and turn golden, about 45 minutes. Let cool a bit. Stir in the remaining ingredients. Transfer to a serving dish and let chill for a couple of hours to let the flavors meld.
~ Baba Ganoush ~
~ Easy Radish Spread ~
~ Beet Pesto ~
~ more Dips, Spreads & Pesto recipes ~
~ more onion recipes ~