I love college football. I can take or leave most NFL games, but there’s something really special about college football season for me. I was lucky enough to experience a great college football tradition when I attended Michigan State University. Thanks to my time there, I’m a die-hard Spartan fan and I’m proud to be one. (No comments from the Wolverine peanut gallery, please.)
This weekend promises a big game for Michigan State. THE game for Michigan State, as far as their fans are concerned. On Saturday, the Spartans from East Lansing will play the Wolverines from Ann Arbor. MSU vs. U of M. It’s a big deal. I know that for many of you out there, this game is a big deal to you as well. For some of you, not so much, but you may have a big game of your own coming up. So, in the spirit of friendly competition, I’m going to share some of my favorite Game Day recipes with you this week. Each day, I’ll feature a new recipe. Every recipe can be made ahead of time, so that come game day, you can sit back and enjoy the game!
Let’s get started!
I am going to assume that everyone out there has, at one time or another, snacked on good, old-fashioned French Onion dip and chips. Recipes don’t get much easier than mixing together a packet of dry onion soup mix and sour cream together. Or, in some cases, just grabbing a tub of pre-made dip from the grocery store. As we all know, it’s good stuff. Would you believe me if I told you it can get even better?
I ran across this recipe for homemade French Onion dip last year, (using real, hydrated onions!) and it has become a game day favorite in our house. It’s an easy recipe, but will take up a little more of your time than the soup mix version. The results are well worth it, though.
You’ll start by thinly slicing up two large Vidalia sweet onions. These are big onions and, after you’re done wiping away the tears, it’s going to look like an awful lot of onion to go in a dip. Once you cook these onions down, slowly, with a little bit of butter, you’ll be amazed at how things will change.
Caramelizing onions takes some time, but it’s also an easy thing to do. Once the onions are in the pan, you’ll let them be for the most part. Go read a book! Just make sure you stir the onions every few minutes. The entire process will take between 30-40 minutes, depending on how thick you sliced your onions. When the onions are golden brown, it’s time to move onto the next step.
See how much they’ve sizzled down already?
Next, you’ll add some sliced shallots to the mix. Shallots are not green onions. Green onions are often called scallions and are sometimes confused with shallots. Shallots are a member of the onion family, but they are smaller and have a sweeter, almost garlic-like taste at times. I can usually find them near the garlic in the grocery store. For more information and pictures, check out the link here.
After you’ve added the shallots and cooked that mixture down for another 10 minutes or so, it’s time to add some garlic.
I wish I could attach some sort of scratch and sniff plug-in so you could smell this. Thanks to two onions and an hour of my time, the smell of caramelized onions took over my house for a day, but it was worth it. You can make this dip a couple of days ahead of time, so by the time Game Day rolls around, your house won’t smell like a French bistro.
After the garlic cooks for a couple of minutes, you’ll remove the onions from the heat. Let them cool for about five minutes and then chop the mixture up into little pieces. You’ll be left with a beautiful relish, only amounting to about a cup of onions, garlic and shallots, but that little cup is packed with some serious deliciousness.
Once the onions have cooled to room temperature (it doesn’t take long), mix them with some sour cream, mayonnaise, celery salt, Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper.
You’ll be tempted to dive in right then. Don’t!!! This dip needs to just hang out in the fridge for a while. I highly suggest making it, at least, a day ahead of when you want to serve it. Two days wouldn’t hurt at all.
When Game Day arrives, grab a chip and go for the win!
REAL FRENCH ONION DIP
Adapted from Guy Fieri
- 2 Tbsp. butter
- 2 Vidalia (or any other sweet variety) onions, sliced into ¼- inch thick rings
- 2 large shallots, sliced into ⅛-inch thick rings
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 cups sour cream
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 1 tsp. celery salt
- 1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
- salt and pepper
- chives, finely chopped, for garnish
- Potato chips
- In a large saute' pan, melt the butter over medium-high heat. Add the sliced onions and cook, stirring occasionally, for 20-40 minutes, or until golden brown and caramelized. Add the sliced shallots and saute for another 10 minutes until the shallots are dark brown. Add the garlic and cook for 2 more minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and let the mixture cool for 5 minutes. Chop the onion mixture into small, ¼ inch pieces. Set aside.
- In a medium-sized bowl, mix the sour cream, mayonnaise, celery salt and Worcestershire sauce together. Stir in 1 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Stir the onion mixture into the sour cream mixture. Refrigerate at least one hour or overnight. (The longer, the better.) Garnish with chives and serve with potato chips.
- ENJOY! (GO SPARTANS!)