Written Tues 10 Sept 1996 (afternoon)
The traditional way of caramelizing onions involves lots of
butter and sugar. The onions are fried in butter,then sugar is
added and cooked until it goes brown - rather like making
caramel in fact. Look up a caramel recipe in your grandmother's
favourite cookbook for more info.
But you *can* make them fatfree...Cut your onions the way you
like them; large onions either sliced or quartered lengthways
(leave as much of the root on as possible to hold them together)
and small baby or pickling onions can be left whole.
Put them in a wide saucepan or deep frying pan (skillet) with
enough vegetable stock to just cover them - note the sliced
onions will require a lot less than the larger pieces. This is
OK as they also need less cooking time. Cover, bring to the boil
and boil, covered, stirring occasionally, until all the liquid
Now uncover and add sugar to taste - you will have to
experiment for quantities, but use more than you think you will
need. Lower heat to medium and cook, stirring, until it's all
gone brown and gooey and the onions are just soft. The sugar
melts and as the liquid reduces it forms a caramel-like
substance. The sugar will not actually caramelize as the
temperatures are too low when stock is used instead of fat.