Are you impressed? Intrigued? Or, like my former roommate, disgusted? (Note: My former roommate always disliked onions. She did not become my former roommate because of my onion consumption. She got a job in another city, I swear.)
When I came home from the grocery store today and was putting away my goods (with a pot of bolognese sauce simmering away on the stovetop), I discovered an awful lot of green onions hiding out in one of the crisper drawers. Drat! I thought to myself. Surely there is some other use for green onions than simply chopping them up for a garnish or mixed in with my scrambled eggs! It would be nice if I could just buy 2 at the store so I don’t have to perfume my fridge with onion smell any longer than necessary.
So, I set out to use up all these onions all in one dish. I decided to braise them as one might do for leeks. After all, green onions do look a lot like leeks; they’re like baby versions – more tender and mild.
What was produced was actually quite lovely and surprisingly delicate – not onion-y at all. Oh, by the way, I’m calling this dish “braised scallions” mainly because I think “braised green onions” sounds awkward. Tomayto, tomahto. Scallions seems to flow better. And it reminds me of rapscallions, which is just a fun word to say, don’t you think? And, hey, now that I think about the definition, that’s exactly what I wanted to say to those “green onions” when I uncovered them in the fridge: You rapscallions just couldn’t be happy unless you brought the whole gang, huh?! Well, I’ll show you what I think of your onion-wannabe attitude: it’s leeking all over my fridge! Hyuk hyuk hyuk. No, of course I don’t talk to my fridge…’cuz that’d be silly… But what’s in a name, eh? I’m talking about those onions with a smallish white bulb at the bottom and long green tops. Not chives, and not full blown leeks nor onions.
Note: You can replace the green onions/scallions with cleaned leeks in this recipe, but you will need to increase the cooking time by almost double each step of the way. You’ll also need a bit more butter in the beginning, I’d imagine.
1. Preheat your oven to 325F. Prep your green onions by chopping off the hairy root end and the tops of the green parts where it starts to get limp. Arrange in layers in a skillet that has a lid and can go in the oven.
2. Add just enough water for the green onions to cook in. They should not at all be covered in water. Add generous amount of salt and pepper and 2-3 tablespoons of butter (depending on how many onions you’re using). Bring to a boil on the stovetop then put the lid on it and reduce to a simmer for 15 minutes.
3. Remove the lid and raise the heat again so that excess water can boil off. Baste the onions in their buttery broth, then put the whole skillet in the oven, uncovered, for about 5 minutes.
4. Serve with the buttery sauce spooned over the top. Sprinkle with chopped parsley, a small squeeze of lemon juice, or a splash of white wine vinegar.
Wow! I said earlier that it was not overwhelmingly onion-y-tasting. In fact, it was closer to the flavor of cooked greens, but it felt so decadent with the buttery sauce. With this dish to fall back on, I’ll never again be wary of buying a pack of green onions for fear that I’ll only use one smidgey little one in a stir-fry and compost the rest. Give it a try and let me know what you think–show those rapscallions who’s boss! Any other ideas for making green onions disappear? Does anyone else deny talking to their fridge and/or perishable food items?