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Tom's Cookbook Library: ‘Platters and Boards’ offers helpful recipes

Red wine caramelized onion dip sure to please

"Platters and Boards" contains a number of recipes aimed to please guests, including a recipe for a red wine caramelized onion dip.
"Platters and Boards" contains a number of recipes aimed to please guests, including a recipe for a red wine caramelized onion dip.

Whether you are planning a theme party to mark a special milestone or casual get-together with long-time friends, home cooks will find tempting suggestions in “Platters and Boards” by Shelly Westerhausen (Chronicle Books).

Based in Bloomington, Ind., Westerhausen is founder of the blog “Vegetarian Ventures” and author of “Vegetarian Heartland.”

She accommodates her readers with a bounty of creative possibilities. The book is organized by the time of day: morning, afternoon, evening and anytime. Readers also will find suggested meat and drinks pairings.

In the “Happy Hour Platter” chapter, check out the recipe (below) for red wine caramelized onion dip.

Meanwhile, enticing photos by Wyatt Worcel further enhance the newly published book.

Journalist Tom Witom, who lives in Elgin, has written extensively for years about food and the food industry. Feedback can be sent to

Red Wine Caramelized Onion Dip

Makes 4 1/2 cups

1/4 cup olive oil

4 large white onions, finely chopped

1/4 cup red wine

1/2 tsp. fine sea salt + more as needed

2 cups sour cream

1 cup Greek yogurt

1 tablespoon tamari or soy sauce

Dash of freshly ground black pepper

In large saucepan over medium heat, warm olive oil. Add onions and saute for 20 to 25 minutes, stirring often, until golden brown. Add red wine and saute until wine is cooked off, about 10 minutes more. Remove from heat, add salt and let cool.

Once cooled, transfer onions to cutting board and finely chop. Transfer to medium mixing bowl and fold in sour cream, yogurt and soy sauce. Season with pepper and more salt, if needed. Cover and transfer to refrigerator and for at least 30 minutes before serving. Can be stored in refrigerator for up to three days.

Note: This dip goes well with crackers, potato chips, olives and marinated artichokes. On a serving tray also add carrots, celery sticks, radish slices, cherry tomatoes and cheese cubes.

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