Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Mushroom ravioli and creamy caramelized onion sauce

Okay, so the disclaimer to these ravioli - I am not a big mushroom person. Like, I'll eat them, but I don't crave them...they're not an ingredient I'll search out...I couldn't identify which kind is which. They're just filler to me. They're just meh.

When I was at the store today, I couldn't decide what I wanted for dinner. The kiddo suggested a steak. Uh, YES, please! So I picked up a pretty sirloin at the meat counter and then debated on what to put with it. Sure, I could go old school traditional and bake a potato, but how many times have I done this? Hordes. Again, meh. I figured I'd take a walk through the frozen food aisles to see if anything caught my eye. Yup! Mushroom ravioli. Yes, frozen. No, I don't care. And trust me, if you find a good brand, you won't care either. (I used Hy-Vee brand and they were fantastic. Likely, however, unless you live in Iowa or the neighboring areas, you won't find these. I've been told Bertolli are good, though.)

But what to put with it? I love tomato sauce (I mean, tomatoes? THOSE I crave.), but again, I've done it a thousand times. Maybe if I put some heavy cream with them, though. Oooh! That'd be good. So I grabbed a can of seasoned tomatoes, a pint of cream and some fresh garlic with the intention of coming up with something yummy.

As dinnertime got closer, though, the more I questioned my decision to do tomatoes. I totally don't do wine with cooking (uh...why cook with it when I can drink it? Helllooooo?!), so a white wine sauce was out. Onions appealed, though. And I had that cream. Maybe some sort of onion sauce? Suuuuure. Let's give it a shot. Worst case scenario, it sucks and I dump the tomatoes on it after all, right?

Confession time: I've never caramelized onions. (Okay, put back the pieces of your shattered lives and move on.) So I looked up a recipe. I can't and won't take credit for that. I will say that I followed their advice of sprinkling on a pinch of sugar later in cooking and a splash of balsamic vinegar. I also salted it twice to draw moisture out of the onions so the natural sugars in them would come with it. They turned out perfectly. I wish I'd taken pictures of them as they were cooking, but I usually don't bother with it if it's the first time I'm attempting a new recipe because it distracts me from doing it right. Boy, do I wish I would have, though because they were PERFECT! Beautiful brown color, ideal translucence, incredible flavor!

Sorry, I'm getting carried away.

I boiled the ravioli as the package directed (3 mins in salted water) and made the cream sauce. Now, I will tell you, the onions take forever. FOR. EV. ER. Make sure you set aside about 45 mins for the onions to cook before you start the pasta.  But that's okay - it's foreplay. Sweet baby Jesus, is it foreplay. The last part of the sauce only takes a couple minutes, so you can make it while the ravioli is cooking.

This sauce and these ravioli are the most decadent, delicious thing I've ever cooked. EVER!

Pretty sure, Bella Swan would cry over these things. Edward's all "Money, sex, money, sex...cat." And Bella's like, "Dude, stop talking. These ravioli are orgasmic." 

I mean, just LOOK AT THEM!

Okay, enough talk. Go make them!

1 pkg frozen ravioli (I used mushroom, but cheese would be good, too!)
2 onions, sliced
2-3 T olive oil
2 T butter (or margarine)
1 T minced garlic
1 tsp salt
1 pinch sugar (optional)
1 T balsamic vinegar (optional)
1 pint heavy cream
1 dash ground sage
1 dash ground nutmeg
2 tsp flour (or corn starch)

Use the recipe link to caramelize the onions. I added the garlic, nutmeg and sage about halfway through the process just to give it some extra flavor. The sugar, I added about 40 mins into it. The balsamic vinegar was added shortly thereafter. I did add a small amount of water toward the end, too, just to keep the onions from getting crispy.

When the onions are done (about 45-60 mins later), sprinkle the flour over the top and stir it well. This will help the sauce thicken a little. You don't have to add it, but I was worried the sauce would be too thin if I didn't. Slowly, add the heavy cream, stirring gently so you don't tear the onions.

Bring to a simmer while you drain the ravioli and serve it up. Pour over a couple spoonfuls of sauce and enjoy.

* I do not take any responsibility for the moaning that will ensue while consuming this dish. You're responsible for your own soundproofing if you have thin walls in your house.

Oh! I forgot to tell you, the steak was only meh compared to the ravioli. I threw some sauce on it, too, but even so, it just sat there like an ugly stepsister to the Cinderella that are these ravioli. Poor thing.

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