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RECIPE: Gourmet Onion Dip, With Caramelized Onions

Fine food lovers: The days of mixing sour cream with Lipton Onion Soup mix are behind you.

Herewith, a better recipe for Game Day or any party. It uses caramelized onions, crème fraîche and fromage blanc, making it more “French” than a dip made with onion soup mix.

The recipe comes to us from Bellwether Farms. Located on 35 acres in Sonoma County, the dairy is dedicated to sustainable agricultural practices, ethical animal husbandry and crafting the highest quality dairy products possible.

Bellwether Farms crafts a family of aged and fresh sheep and cow milk cheeses and sheep milk yogurt using time-honored traditions and whole milk sourced from their flock and six family dairy farms. Discover more at BellwetherFarms.com.
 
 
RECIPE: CLASSIC FRENCH ONION DIP WITH CRÈME FRAÎCHE AND FROMAGE BLANC

Ingredients

  • 2 medium onions, finely chopped
  • 3 tablespoons canola or vegetable oil
  • 5 ounces Bellwether Farms crème fraîche or substitute
  • ¾ cup Bellwether Farms fromage blanc or substitute
  • 2 teaspoons white wine vinegar
  • 1 bunch fresh chives, snipped or finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • For serving: crudités and/or chips or pretzels
  •  
    Preparation

    1. HEAT the oil and add the chopped onion to a medium sauté pan. Lower the heat and cook slowly until the onion softens and becomes caramelized, about 30-40 minutes. Don’t rush this step and the onions will be sweet and not bitter. Remove from heat and allow to cool completely.

    2. MIX together in a bowl the cooled onions and remaining ingredients. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

    TIP: Make extra caramelized onions as a garnish for the dip. While you’re at it, make a whole bunch extra for a week’s cooking: with eggs, burgers, sandwiches, meat, fish, potatoes, etc. Onions may look large but they cook down to what looks like very little, so don’t hesitate to use a lot.

     


    [1] Caramelized onion dip with crème fraîche and fromage blanc (photo © Bellwether Farms).


    [2] Make extra caramelized onions as a garnish (photo © Robert Mondavi Winery).


     
    ONION DIP HISTORY: IS FRENCH ONION DIP REALLY FRENCH?

    The classic French Onion Dip recipe was created in 1954 in Los Angeles by a French chef whose name has been lost to history.

    It dip was not known in France, but the seasoning used was modeled after the flavors of the classic French dish, Soupe à l’Oignon, made with beef stock and heavily caramelized onions.

    The chef combined sour cream and an instant dehydrated onion soup mix, that would quickly become a real crowd pleaser. Printed in a local newspaper, the recipe spread quickly.

    The following year, The Lipton Company promoted the recipe on Arthur Godfrey’s Talent Scouts a popular television show.

    Initially, the recipe was known as Lipton California Dip, shortly contracted to California Dip. The name French Onion Dip began to be used in the 1960s.

    A Lipton advertising campaign promoted it on television and in supermarkets, and the recipe was added to the Lipton Instant Onion Soup package in 1958.

    An enduring favorite, there are now many ready-to-eat versions, such as Ruffles French Onion Dip and Frito-Lay French Onion Dip. Commercially prepared products include thickeners, stabilizer and preservatives.

    Beyond chips and crudités, fans use it as a spread or topping onburgers, sandwiches and tacos [source].

      




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