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Versatile onion marmalade balances the sweet, savory

Diane Rossen Worthington
Tribune Content Agency

Come summertime, onion marmalade is a condiment that I use in many dishes. My Seriously Simple motto is: Seek out maximum flavor and spend minimum time in the kitchen. Even though it takes some time to cook this marmalade, you will have it on hand for a variety of different dishes. It can take the place of traditional sauces, like ketchup or mustard, or can be an extra layer of flavor in a sauce or dip.

There is a lot of room for you to personalize this flavor enhancer. Feel free to add a few sprigs of rosemary or thyme. You can also choose your favorite onion varieties like Maui, yellow or red onions. Use port or beer instead of the balsamic and wine. (Just keep the same proportions in the recipe.) Add shredded Belgian endive or fennel for a slightly bittersweet flavor. I like throwing in pitted and finely chopped black or green olives to add an earthy taste. You can keep this for a month in your refrigerator.

The marmalade can be used for steaks, on bread for a better grilled cheese or as an accompaniment to grilled sausages, pork tenderloin or veal chops. It can also be used stirred into scrambled eggs or as a filling in omelets and in dips.

Diane Rossen Worthington is the author of 18 cookbooks and a James Beard Award-winning radio show host.

Onion Marmalade

This recipe may be doubled or tripled. Just make sure to use a large, deep casserole dish to accommodate the larger amount of onions.

1/4 cup olive oil

4 large yellow, red or Maui (or a combination) onions, thinly sliced

3/4 cup red wine

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar

1 tablespoon sugar

Salt and freshly ground white pepper

Heat oil in large, nonaluminum casserole dish on medium high heat. Add the onions and saute for about 12 to15 minutes or until well softened. Stir frequently.

Add the wine, balsamic vinegar and sugar to the onions and simmer on low heat until almost all of the liquid has evaporated and the onions are very tender and caramelized into a deep golden brown, about 30 minutes. Watch carefully toward the end to avoid burning the onions. Add the salt and pepper. Taste for seasoning. Cool and serve at room temperature. Makes about 1 1/2 cups or 24 servings.

Advance Preparation: May be prepared up to a month ahead, covered in an airtight container and refrigerated.

Per serving (per 1 tablespoon): 41 calories; 2 g fat (0 g saturated fat; 44 percent calories from fat); 4 g carbohydrates; 2 g sugar; 0 mg cholesterol; 26 mg sodium; 0.5 g protein; 1 g fiber.