Alton Brown's French Onion Dip Recipe Includes Duke's Mayonnaise

Be still our Southern hearts!

Stuck with a giant bag of onions? Alton Brown is here to help.

In a Pantry Raid video from April 2020, the culinary guru demonstrates his method for making French onion dip, A.K.A. the only thing that can make potato chips taste even better. Yes, please!

Alton Brown
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Brown's recipe starts with caramelizing four large yellow onions. Fortunately, for those of us who are less experienced in the kitchen, he goes into plenty of detail.

Begin by peeling and thinly slicing the onions either by hand or (very carefully) with a mandolin. Separate and place the slices in a large, wide-bottomed pot. Next, add a quarter teaspoon (plus a pinch!) of baking soda, which—because it wouldn't be an Alton Brown video without a little food science—raises the pH of the onions and helps with the browning process. Basically, it "speeds the whole thing up."

From there, throw in one tablespoon of kosher salt and one tablespoon of dark brown sugar. Combine, making sure the onions are thoroughly coated, then cover your pot and let rest at room temperature for 10 minutes.

Next, move your pot onto high heat and mix in a quarter cup of olive oil. Cook and stir often until your precious onions have turned light gold and have reduced by about 75%. Drop the heat to medium and keep on stirring. Once charred bits begin accumulating at the bottom of the pot, deglaze your onions with a splash of sherry vinegar and water. Stir, scraping the bottom, until the browned bits are combined with the onions.

Keep stirring until the onions are even further reduced, then deglaze again. The goal is dark golden-brown onions. After all that reducing, you should be left with about 1 ½ cups of onions.

Now you're ready to make magic.

Combine ½ cup of your caramelized onions with 1 ½ cups of full-fat sour cream. As Brown says, "This is no time to mess around with low-fat sour cream!"

Next goes in ¾ cup of mayonnaise, ideally North Carolina's own Duke's. Yes, that's right. Why? Because unlike other mayonnaise, "it has a little bit of apple cider vinegar" for a little extra tang. Finally, season with ¼ teaspoon of garlic powder and ¼ teaspoon of pepper and mix to combine.

And there you have it folks: homemade, Alton Brown-approved, French onion dip!

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