Monday, August 13, 2012

CSA Abundance: Onion Marmalade

For quite some time I have wanted us to subscribe to a CSA farm -- that's "community supported agriculture" to you -- and this year we finally did. For some money up front, you get a share of the produce a small farm produces. We chose Lagoner Farms, and couldn't be be happier with the result. The produce we have received from Lagoner Farms has been really outstanding and they are very nice people, to boot.

The only downside (which is not a downside at all) is that we have gotten a LOT of some stuff. For example, I use a lot of onions in our cooking. Miss J and I think if a little onion is good, then a lot of onion is better. But even we couldn't eat 3 big onions a week for 3 weeks. So what to do? Make Onion Marmalade, of course!

Onion Marmalade is in the categories of things labeled "Things I want to try but not right now. " Nine onions in a three week period moved this item up in the list, and so one Saturday, I found myself weeping quietly over some lovely onions. And weeping I was. I usually read five to ten recipes online before I launch myself into a new project, and I can't believe that NOT ONE of the authors mentioned crying. But the result was worth it.

I like "My Husband Cooks" recipe best as a starting place. You can check it out here.

Onion Marmalade
4 cups onions (sliced thin)
2 T bacon fat (If you don't have bacon grease in your fridge, well, too bad for you. Use oil.)
1/2 cup white sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 T port wine (I would have used red wine but I didn't want to open a bottle for 2 T.)
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1 bay leaf
1 tsp salt

1. In a non-reactive pan, melt the bacon fat and add the onions and salt. Cook until the onions are beginning to turn brown, stirring every 5 minutes or so. Be careful -- just a little bit of burning makes the whole mess taste bitter and yucky.
3. Add the sugars, port wine, bay leaf, and balsamic vinegar. Cook over medium heat until until the onions are soft and the juicy part is thick. This will take about 40 minutes. Keep an eye on things -- you don't want it to burn or turn into concrete.

4. Remove the bay leaf and cool. Transfer to a glass or plastic container with a good lid. This will last quite a while in the fridge.

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