Pearl onions braised with butter and chicken stock, great side dish for roast beef or stews.
- 1 pound pearl onions, about 1 inch in diameter
- Chicken stock or water (or vegetable stock for vegetarian option)
- Salt and pepper
- Sugar (for brown-braised onions)
1 Blanch the onions: Blanch the onions in boiling water for one minute. Drain and rinse in cold water to stop cooking. Slice off the ends; slip off the skins.
If you are using frozen pearl onions, defrost and drain them before the next step.
2a For "white-braised" onions:
Put onions in one layer in a saucepan with chicken stock or water coming up halfway. Add 1 Tbsp butter, season lightly, cover, and simmer slowly 25 minutes, or until tender.
2b For "brown-braised" onions:
Before braising, sauté peeled onions in one layer in butter until lightly browned. Then add liquid, salt, and 1 teaspoon of sugar; cover and simmer slowly 25 minutes, or until tender.
3 Uncover and boil off excess liquid: Uncover, boil off excess liquid, and fold in another Tbsp of butter if you wish.
4 (optional) For "creamed" onions add some heavy cream to white-braised onions when they are just tender. Simmer several minutes until thickened, basting.