December 21, 2011: Pearl Onions in Bechamel

December 21, 2011

I made my regular visit to the reduced section of the produce department the other day, and I was pleased that they were practically throwing away pearl onions, so I decided to make one of my favorite dishes I associate having at the holidays: boiled pearl onions in a béchamel sauce. If you’ve never had pearl onions, they are white baby onions the size of small and large marbles. Boiled until tender, they are tucked in this velvety cream sauce that is infused with spices. A comfort food if there ever was one!

First you need to skin the onions. This can take a while as the young onions hold their skins close to their delicious insides. I had about a pound of onions and it took me about half an hour to skin them all. With a very sharp knife, nip off the tops and carefully peel skins away.Rinse, and immerse into boiling water (2 Qts.+2 Tblsp. of sal de mer) for about 20-30 minutes until the largest onion is easily pieced with a fork. Drain. While onions are boiling, prepare the Béchamel Sauce.

Béchamel Sauce:  In a pan over medium heat, melt 3 Tblps. butter. Add 3 Tblsp. white flour and whisk until bubbly. Heat for another two minutes (careful not to burn the butter.) Still whisking, add 1/2C. veggie broth (or chicken broth, if you like) plus 1C. milk. Continue whisking until the Béchamel thickens. Add 1/2 Teasp. fine sal de mer, a few grinds of pepper and 1/2 Teasp. Herbs de Provence. If Béchamel is too thick, add a bit more stock. Pour over drained onions. Serve.




  1. So cool to be able to make something like onions sound so amazing…And like always, you manage to create superior dishes out of not much.

  2. Reblogged this on Ad's travelblog & other thoughts and commented:
    I’m getting hungry already…

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