Do you live away from your family? When we were younger Christmas, for my husband and I, meant swapping between my parents and his. We always made sure we were home for New Year though- that was when we celebrated with our friends. We’d have our own little version of Christmas dinner on New Years’ Day with a slow cooked ham. With leftover chestnuts from Christmas baking, we took to cooking apples and chestnuts together as a side dish.
A few years later, we bought our own home and began having Christmas there. Now I usually cook Christmas dinner for my pescatarian mother in law. The thing about Christmas dinner is that it’s not just the meat that contains the meat – if you see what I mean. Stuffing (dressing) is made with sausage meat, sprouts are sauteed with pancetta and potatoes cooked in goose grease. A fruit based side dish is perfect – it can be made totally vegetarian but it is also the perfect compliment to sweet meats like turkey, goose and ham. Adding slow braised onions into the mix just adds to the sweetness.
Recipe Tips for Braised Onions and Apples
Cooking apples vary a lot in terms of sweetness and water content. How much extra liquid you need will also depend on how lively your hob is. I make up a jug of vegetable stock that’s more than big enough when I start and add it as needed. This time I didn’t need to add any extra sugar, you really will need to taste it and see. If you’re not feeding it to vegetarians you can add some meat juices instead of the sugar. And the leftovers are great in a Boxing Day soup! You could try using red onions for an extra twist.
15 minPrep Time
1 hrCook Time
1 hr, 15 Total Time
- 2 cooking apples
- 2 large onions
- Butter for frying
- 500ml vegetable stock
- 1 tsp brown sugar, or to taste
- Peel the onions and apples and cut them into small chunks. Make up the vegetable stock in a jug.
- Heat up the butter in a saucepan, and when it has melted add the onions and apples. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the pan becomes dry.
- Add enough vegetable stock to make the onions and apples moist, without being soupy. Turn the pan down all the way,and partially cover.
- Leave it to simmer for around an hour, stirring and adding extra stock as necessary several times.
- When you're just about to serve taste and sweeten accordingly.