Creamed onions were always on the holiday table when I was growing up. And, as I never met an onion I didn't like, they're on my table, too.
Some recipes call for baking this dish, even adding cheese on top, but I prefer mine simply cooked on the stovetop. I do like a pinch of nutmeg for holiday flavor, though.
This dish can be made ahead, but plan on having to thin the sauce with onion cooking liquid or milk when reheating.
Makes 4 to 6 servings
1 pound frozen pearl onions (See Note)
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 cup milk
Salt and pepper to taste
1. Bring a pot of water to a boil, add onions and simmer until tender, 7 to 10 minutes. Drain, reserving about ½ cup cooking liquid.
2. Meanwhile, in a saucepan, melt butter over medium-low heat. Add flour and cook, stirring often, for 2 minutes. Gradually add milk, stirring or whisking constantly. Bring to a simmer, increasing the heat as needed, and cook until thickened to a sauce consistency, 5 to 10 minutes. (If any lumps are visible, strain the sauce through a sieve before adding the onions.)
2. Add salt and pepper to taste. Add the pinch of nutmeg and the onions and stir. Taste again for salt and pepper. If sauce is too thick, add some of the reserved cooking water.
Note: Frozen pearl onions, which are already peeled, work great in this recipe. If using fresh, unpeeled pearl onions, boil them in water for about 1 minute to loosen the skins before peeling. Canned onions are not recommended.