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Two caramelized onion sauces

April 14, 2010

So finally after over half-a-decade I’ve started eating meat.  That means no more juggling in the kitchen, right?  No more panic involving cooking meat on one burner, boiling beans on another, and freaking out because of the audience watching from above:

Wrong.  Just because we’re both eating meat these days doesn’t mean things are more simple in the kitchen.  In fact, my most recent bought of pinned-needle-cooking came from a vegetarian meal.  The panic might be due to my undying love for the Omnivore and my wanting to please him (or score some bonus points) with one of his favorite things: white pasta.

But I still want wheat pasta.  And I’m pretty stubborn.  And I’m doing the cooking anyway.  So, once in a blue moon, I’ll make one pot of white pasta and one pot of wheat pasta.  For the record, the ‘Vore does a great job of eating the healthier wheat pasta a lot of the time!

But that’s not all.  Let us not forget that I am a woman and my husband is a man.  Why is this important?  Men get to eat cream sauce on their pasta.  It is a fact of life as fundamental as the spherical nature of the earth and the orbital pattern of the moon.

Of course, I could eat the cream sauce, too.  It sure would have made things simple.  But…hey, I had an extra burner left, so why not make myself a sauce to be proud of, a sauce that is healthy and just as delicious as the creamy alternative.

The cream sauce earned the Omnivore’s summa cum laude rating: RQ (restaurant quality).  And my sauce earned the “man, I wish restaurants would serve healthy and delicious meals like this one” rating.  So, in short, we ought never set foot in a restaurant again but clearly the results can be recreated at home.

The foundation for both these recipes is caramelized onions.  Allow at least 1 hr to cook them!

One Year Ago: African Inspired Pizza

My sauce (2 servings)
2 cups sliced onions
1 cup greens, chopped (spinach, chard, kale, etc.)
1/8 tsp salt
1/2 – 3/4 cup pasta water
1/2 cup toasted walnuts
4 oz. pasta

In a wide saucepan, heat a little oil to medium heat.  Add sliced onions and cook 5-10 minutes.  Stir one or two times.  DO NOT BROWN.  Reduce heat to low and cover for 10 minutes.  Remove cover and cook 30 more minutes over low heat until completely caramelized, stirring occasionally.

Cook pasta.  Reserve 1/2 – 3/4 cup pasta water and add to skillet with caramelized onions.  Add 1/2 cup pasta water to onions and add greens, simmering until wilted.  Add an additional 1/4 cup, if desired.  Toss with drained pasta and add salt and pepper.  Place 1/4 cup toasted walnuts on each serving of pasta.  Add salt and pepper to taste.

His sauce (2 servings)
2 cups onions, caralemlized
1/3 cup half n half
1/2 cup pasta water
1/2 cup toasted walnuts
4 oz. pasta
salt and pepper

In a wide saucepan, heat a little oil to medium heat.  Add sliced onions and cook 5-10 minutes.  Stir one or two times.  DO NOT BROWN.  Reduce heat to low and cover for 10 minutes.  Remove cover and cook 30 more minutes over low heat until completely caramelized, stirring occasionally.

Cook pasta as directed.

Add 1/3 cup half n half to onions and bring to a very gentle simmer.  Thin to desired consistency with reserved pasta water.  Toss in cooked pasta and top with 1/4 c. toasted walnuts.  Add salt and pepper to taste.

My sauce, per serving:
Calories 247.9
Total Fat 20.2 g
Saturated Fat 1.9 g
Total Carbohydrate 14.9 g
Dietary Fiber 4.8 g
Protein 6.3 g

His sauce, per serving:
Calories 296.1
Total Fat 24.8 g
Cholesterol 14.9 mg
Total Carbohydrate 15.8 g
Dietary Fiber 4.1 g
Protein 7.1 g

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. April 14, 2010 11:12 pm

    Stupid men and their getting-to-eat-cream sauces. Also, mm, caramelized onions, so good.

  2. David permalink
    August 22, 2010 7:50 am

    Have you ever run across a recipe for suga rosa pasta sauce?

    Thank you

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