The latest discovery from the constant look-out for sabor in my cooking adhering to the standards of no / low sodium, cream, butter and generally low-fat: caramelized yellow onions, cooked in olive oil and maybe some left-over stock or broth.
Last week I learned from a professional that you can caramelize large quantities of yellow onions at one go (the yellow one are best for particular chemical reasons -- the same reasons that cause yellow onions to make you cry the most if you don't resort to the cold water / lemon juice before-hand ploy), and then store them in the refrigerator to use as you like. You can even freeze them. You can do deep caramelizing or just sautee them lightly.
Cooking onions rather than just adding them to the cooking beans, beef stew or whatever I've learned often does result in better flavor. Sometimes too, the onions are little more 'hard' or something than you like when you just dump them in raw and rely on the heat of the cooking to cook them through. You don't want to do this every time, of course, but with some things it works better than not doing it. Caramelized onions are an extra-special addition. They are marvelous on top of whipped potatoes, we've learned.
Signs of the economic times, despite the crowing out D.C.: store after store front boarded up and closed; Christmas decorations sparse and of frugal materials; stores empty of shoppers. There are exceptions to these, and these stores are all inexpensive jewelry made in China, H&M, etc. Despite the happiness in D.C. about the jobs report today -- we ain't seein' 'em here. Also, finally, I can see tourism drying up down here in the nabe.