1 bunch green garlic
1 medium brown onion
2 sprigs thyme leaves, leaves removed
1 tablespoon olive oil or olive oil/ butter combined
Salt and pepper
1/2 cup water, white wine, white vermouth, or a combination
1 teaspoon sugar
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar (you may or may not need this)
Remove most of the greens from the garlic. Split down the length and thoroughly rinse in cold water to remove possible grit in the layers. Finely slice into half-moons.
Split the onion through the stem and peel. Cut each half again through the stem and finely slice into quarter moons.
Heat the oil/butter over medium-high heat in a smallish, heavy pan. It’s okay if things are a little crowded when the alliums go in as they will shrink quite a bit. When the oil is hot, add the thyme leaves, and as soon as you can smell them, add the garlic and the onion. Stir mixture to coat with the oil, turn up the heat and sauté until mixture is wilting and starting to color.Keep this up until everything is picking up a nice color and you get some fond (the browning and bits on the bottom of the pan) in the pan – be careful not to scorch it.
Add the liquid, and reduce the heat to low. Sprinkle the sugar over all and stir. Cook at a low heat until the contents of the pan take on a thick, syrupy look – jammy.
Taste for balance. Sometimes a little vinegar will help spark the flavors, bringing out nuance. If you are curious, pull out a little of the jam and add a touch of vinegar to try. Keep it light and remember that as you cook the vinegar it will lose some of the sharpness.
If it is done, allow to cool and put into a jar that has a tight seal. If the jam seems a little dry when in the jar, add a splash of oil to the top.
Keeps a week or so.
CHEF NOTES: You can just use a lot of olive oil and stew the alliums. This won’t be as sweet, but the oil can be skimmed and used for cooking and vinaigrettes. If you are confident or have done this a few times, you can use extra water (for a little leeway) and put a top on the pan and simmer over very low heat while you do something else.
This spread is delicious smeared on toasts à la tartine, pizzas, mixed into a simple cream sauce for pasta, as a topping for seared salmon or pork chops.
SOURCE: Recipe courtesy of Chef Andrew Cohen, Chef in Residence, Monterey Bay Certified Farmers Markets