09 October 2007

Pan-Fried Onion Dip

This dip is so so good. It's kinda like the onion dip you buy in the grocery store, only a thousand times better. It's super-awesome-perfection onion dip, and if Ina Garten had her way, it would be a lot less healthy than what I made.

Another Ina recipe, although this one I had to alter because I'd gain 5 pounds if I made it as directed. Maybe for a special occasion, or on my death bed, I'll make it the full-fat way as Ina instructs. But I am way too in love with this dip (and make it way too often) to make it the way she gives it.

In Ina's defense: I hear people complain about her fattening recipes, but frankly I can't blame her for using such artery-clogging ingredients. These are more than likely the recipes from her catering business, which had quite the reputation for its delicious offerings. And if I had a catering business, you better believe that I'd use the most tasty, flavor-enhancing (more than likely fattening) ingredients, too. Butter, lard, cream, sugar. Pile it on. Get 'em hooked and keep the jobs coming in. The woman has the nicest smile, and she sure seems like a sweetie-pie on her television show, but make no mistake: she's a smart businesswoman.

Anyway, the recipe below is my (normal-person) version of Ina's recipe. I cut down on the butter/oil, and used reduced fat where I could. I'm sure it is still very bad for you, but think of it this way: it's not as bad as it could be! I ate it with Wheat Thins instead of kettle-style potato chips, but I can't blame you if you use the kettle chips (there is no better way to eat this dip).

Pan-Fried Onion Dip


2 large yellow onions (you want about 3 c. of sliced onion)

3 Tbsp. unsalted butter

3 Tbsp. canola oil

1/4 tsp. ground cayenne pepper

1 tsp. kosher salt

1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

4 oz. reduced-fat cream cheese, at room temperature

1/2 c. reduced-fat sour cream

1/2 c. reduced-fat mayonnaise

Cut the onions in half, and then slice them into 1/8-in. thick half-rounds. Cut the halves in half again (quarters) if you want shorter onion pieces in your dip.

Heat the butter and oil in a large sauté pan on medium heat. Add the onions, cayenne, salt and pepper and sauté for 10-15 minutes, until they are beginning to brown. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook, stirring occasionally, for 20-30 more minutes, until the onions are completely browned and caramelized. Allow the onions to cool.

Place the cream cheese, sour cream, and mayonnaise in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and beat until smooth. Add the onions and mix together well. Taste for seasonings (add salt and pepper if needed).

Serve at room temperature, with chopped veggies, thick (kettle-style) chips, crackers, etc. It's important to serve this at room temperature! The dip is rather thick, if you serve it cold (refrigerated) then it'll be very hard to dip.

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