Jamie Purviance’s Red Wine Cipollini Onions

Shed No Tears With These Onions

Jamie Purviance’s Red Wine Cipollini Onions


Tom was fortunate to attend an event at Melissa’s Produce featuring grilling expert Jamie Purviance, author of WEBER’S ULTIMATE GRILLING: A Step-by-Step Guide to Barbecue Genius!  Tom is the grill master in our family, so I have to admit I haven’t ever really thumbed through a “barbecue” cookbook, but this one was great!  Makes me want to take up grilling!

This book is perfect for beginners and grill masters alike.  Jamie Purviance has been a grill master for Weber for more than 20 years and has written numerous cookbooks.  He starts the book with a section on what he calls the “4 Ts” which are “Temperature, Time, Techniques and Tools.”  The sections are broken down into easy to follow instructions as to the course (starters, beef and lamb, pork, poultry, seafood, vegetables and sides, and dessert), with techniques, tips and great recipes.  He also has a “Pantry” section with rubs, pastes, marinades, brines, sauces, dressings and more.  I have tabbed lots of recipes we will be trying this summer.

The first recipe we tried was Jamie’s Corn on the Cob with Chile Oil and Lime.  It was fantastic!  We should grill the corn all the time.


Next up, rib eye steaks and Cipollini onions in a red wine reduction. Cooking the entire meal on the grill requires some forethought, so everything is ready to eat at the same time. We rarely grill several things at once, although as we primarily use the gas grill it should be much easier to coordinate.

For this meal, not only did we grill the steaks, the onions and the corn, but we finished up with grilled pineapple with blackberry sauce for dessert.  All from Jamie’s cookbook.  Wow!!

This post is for Jamie’s Red Wine Cipollini Onions which make a delectable side dish to accompany steaks or top a hamburger.  Red wine, balsamic and brown sugar… yum.  I love onions but had never cooked with a Cipollini.  When I looked it up I found that it is a much sweeter onion with a higher sugar content that helps them caramelize quickly.  Melissa’s Produce sent us a couple of bags of their “Cipolline” Onions (they spell them differently) to try for this recipe (Thanks, Melissa’s!!).  They should be available in the produce section at your local market; if you don’t see them, ask the produce manager.  but they should be available in the produce section at your local market.  If you don’t see them, ask the produce manager.

This onion was easy to peel and NO tears at all.  Lightly trim the root and stem ends off and pull off the outer layer.  The onions smelled divine while they were cooking and due to the higher sugar content they caramelized nicely and had a deep rich flavor.  I am definitely adding Cipollini onions (and Jamie’s cookbook) to our cooking rotation.


1 lb. Cipollini onions, ends trimmed and outer layer removed
1 c. dry red wine
½ c. beef broth
1/3 c. balsamic
3 T. brown sugar, packed
¼ t. Kosher salt
¼ t. coarse ground black pepper
1 bay leaf
1 T. fresh thyme, finely chopped
3 T. unsalted butter


You will need a 10-inch or 12-inch cast iron skillet for this recipe.

In a small bowl, combine the wine, beef broth and balsamic.  Stir in the brown sugar, salt and pepper until dissolved.  Add the bay leaf and thyme.  Set aside.


Prepare the grill for direct cooking over medium heat (400°F) and brush the cooking grates clean.  Preheat the skillet over direct heat for 10 minutes.  Add 2 tablespoons butter and the onions to the skillet and close the lid.  Cook, turning occasionally, until deep golden brown and slightly caramelized, 8 to 10 minutes.  Keep an eye on the barbecue temperature so you don’t burn them.

Add the wine mixture to the onions and simmer with the lid closed until the liquid is reduced by more than half and the onions are tender when pierced with a fork (15-20 minutes).  If the onions are not yet tender but liquid is reduced, add more broth as needed.  Carefully remove the skillet from the grill and loosely tent with foil while you are making the rest of your dinner.

When you are ready to serve, return the skillet with the onions to the grill and rewarm until the liquid is syrupy … 1 to 3 minutes.   Stir in the remaining 1 tablespoon butter.  Remove from heat.

Remove the bay leaf … salt and pepper to taste.

Recipe very lightly adapted from WEBER’S ULTIMATE GRILLING: A Step-by-Step Guide to Barbecue Genius!


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