STREAMING NOW: Lorraine's Fast, Fresh and Easy Food

Sweet and Sour Pearl Onions With Balsamic Vinegar

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“I have not made this version, but my Italian mother made a very similar dish when I a child. It was the only way I would eat onions. It was one of those things she just whipped together, and I never learned how. I hope this will duplicate my childhood memories of it. It is called Cipolline in Agrodolce in Italian.”
1hr 15mins
6-8 portions

Ingredients Nutrition

  • 2 lbs white pearl onions
  • 2 cups meat stock
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 14 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • salt
  • pepper, freshly ground, to taste


  1. Bring a large saucepan 3/4 full of water to a boil over high heat. Add the onions and cook for 30 seconds.
  2. Drain and place under cold running water to halt the cooking.
  3. Drain again.
  4. Using a small, sharp knife, trim off the root ends and slip off the skins.
  5. Do not cut the onions too deeply or they will fall apart.
  6. In a large, heavy frying pay over medium heat, combine the onions, stock and butter.
  7. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are partially cooked, about 30 minutes.
  8. Uncover the pan and stir in the vinagar, sugar, salt and pepper.
  9. Reduce the heat to low and cook, uncovered, shaking the pan occasionaly, until the onions are very tender when pierced with a fork, about 30 minutes.
  10. Add a bit of warm water if needed to keep the onions moist.
  11. Serve warm.

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