How could you resist a dip that has caramelized onions, bacon and crème frâiche? The Accidental Locavore couldn’t and an invitation to friend’s for dinner gave me the perfect opportunity. From Vermont Creamery, it served 6:
- 4 strips of bacon
- 2 onions, thinly sliced
- Pinch of sugar
- Pinch of flakey sea salt (like Maldon)
- 1 tablespoon sherry (optional)
- Dash of hot sauce (optional)
- 1 cup Gruyère cheese, shredded
- 1/2 cup crème frâiche
- 1/2 cup mayonnaise
- Pepper to taste
- fresh thyme for garnish
Preheat oven to 400°. In a cast iron skillet, or other heavy sauté pan, cook bacon until nice and crispy. With a slotted spoon, transfer it to a paper towel to drain and cool.
In the same skillet, in the bacon fat, cook your onions, sugar and salt slowly over medium heat until the onions are nicely caramelized. This usually takes about 20 minutes depending on how thinly sliced the onions are (don’t rush it!).
Remove from heat, splash in the sherry and hot sauce if you’re using them, stir to combine.
Crumble the bacon into the skillet, add in the Gruyère, crème frâiche, mayonnaise, pepper and mix everything well.
Bake the skillet of dip for 10 to 20 minutes, until it’s golden and bubbly. Remove from oven, allow to cool and set for about 5 minutes. Garnish with fresh thyme, serve with pita chips or nice crusty bread and enjoy!
Everyone’s verdict: Well, it was polished off in 5 minutes…We served it with some local flatbreads, but any sort of sturdy cracker or chip would work well. Even though our liquor cabinet is crammed with booze, surprisingly there was no sherry. I tossed in a bit of bourbon along with the hot sauce and it was fine. Using homemade mayo is always better than the jarred stuff and if I’d had time, ditto the crème frâiche, but the bacon was also mine. Sautéing some mushrooms would be a nice if unneeded addition. Next time, I’m going to chop up a little more thyme and add it in with the onions — they work well together and I wanted a little more thyme in the dip. While I cooked everything in my cast iron pan, I baked it in an oven-proof soufflé dish, as the pan was too big for the volume of dip.
Save this recipe for your next football (or anything else) party, but you might want to double it…