Onion Marmalade

While reading my new favorite cookbook, The Farmhouse Cookbook by Susan Herrmann Loomis, I spotted this recipe for Onion Marmalade (despite the name, it doesn’t actually contain any citrus peel). We are real lovers of onions around here (my son eats them on almost everything), so I thought it would probably be a big hit.
Using some of the red onions from this year’s crop, I made a batch this weekend. The verdict? Delicious! The purple onions and the wine made it the most incredible deep, rich colour. It’s a little like a caramelized onion chutney, and since we love to put either mango chutney or red pepper jelly in our grilled cheese sandwiches, I can see us using it like that a lot. It would also be a nice addition to a cheese tray (maybe with a baked brie?), and Loomis suggests using it as a sauce on homemade pizza (mmm…). The possibilities are endless!

Onion Marmalade (from The Farmhouse Cookbook):

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter (I used regular and it was just fine)
  • 2 pounds onions, peeled and halved lengthwise, and cut crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick slices
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons dry sherry (I didn’t have any so I used mirin)
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 cup rich red wine
  • 1/4 cup mild honey
  • 1/2 cup chopped dried pitted prunes

Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. When it foams, add the onions and stir until they are thoroughly coated with butter. Sprinkle them with the salt and pepper, reduce heat to low, and cook, stirring occasionally, until they have turned golden, about 20 minutes.
Add the remaining ingredients and cook, uncovered, until the mixture is quite thick and very dark, about 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 hours. Stir the mixture occasionally, and watch it to be sure it doesn’t burn. Season to taste, remove from the heat, and cool to room temperature. Either serve immediately or cover and refrigerate. Onion marmalade keeps well for an indefinite amount of time in the refrigerator. Makes 2 pints.

5 thoughts on “Onion Marmalade”

  • The idea of the marmalade on a pizza sounds great to me. I was reading through the Farmhouse Cookbook this morning, and well – I don’t know where to begin. Hee hee. What pleasure!

  • Is there anything that could be used in place of the pitted prunes? Not a fan of them and thought you may have a suggestion/idea for an alternative.
    Love red onions on my pizza! this is a must give in our foodie gift basket! So many great ideas- now I must get my hands on that book.

  • Tammie – I honestly can’t even tell that they’re in there, but maybe they add to the sweetness and depth of flavour a bit. I have seen recipes that don’t call for any dried fruit, so maybe you could just leave them out. I’ve also seem some that call for raisins instead of prunes (dried apricots might be nice, too).
    Hope that helps!

  • Very happy to see your review of the recipe! I was trolling on line for other options…having my cookbook open to this exact one!! So having a "review" I'm mid way thru cooking now! Thanks so much for sharing!

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