Source: Partnership for Food Safety Education

Creamed Pearl Onion Gratin (byTracey Harrelson, TheKitchenIsMyPlayground)
A deliciously seasoned crumb topping provides a tasty twist to creamed onions, an old-time favorite that can't be beat.
Serves: 6-8
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 25-30


Creamed onions:
1 (10 to 12 oz.) package fresh OR 1 (16 oz.) package frozen pearl onions
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 ¼ cups half-and-half
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
¼ teaspoon dry ground mustard
Dash of ground nutmeg
1 ½ cup (6 oz.) shredded white sharp cheddar cheese, divided
Crumb Topping:
4 tablespoons butter, melted
1 ¼ cup fresh whole wheat breadcrumbs (about 3 slices of bread)
1 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme

1. Start by washing your hands with warm water and soap for at least 20 seconds before and after handling food. Wash your cutting boards and counter tops with hot soapy water. Preheat the oven to 350 °F.
2. If using fresh onions, remove the outer skin. Rub by hand or scrub with a clean brush while rinsing under running tap water. Peel the onions, put in a saucepan and add water to cover. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 6 to 8 minutes or until the onions are just tender. If using frozen onions, thaw overnight in the refrigerator or for a few minutes in the microwave to keep them at a safe temperature during thawing. Heat thawed onions in the microwave or simmer on the stovetop for 3 to 4 minutes until the onions are just tender. Drain well. Set aside.
3. Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a heavy saucepan over low heat; add flour, stirring until smooth. Cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Gradually add half-and-half; cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until sauce is thickened.
4. Add salt, pepper, ground mustard, and nutmeg. Add 1 cup of the shredded cheddar cheese; stir until cheese melts. Gently stir in drained onions.
5. Pour onion mixture into a lightly greased 1-quart baking dish. Sprinkle evenly with remaining ½ cup shredded cheddar cheese.
6. Combine breadcrumbs and chopped thyme. Toss breadcrumbs with the 4 tablespoons of melted butter until crumbs are well coated. Sprinkle evenly over onion mixture.
7. Bake, uncovered, for 25 to 30 minutes or until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the center reaches 165 °F and the top is golden brown. If you will not be serving right away, reduce oven temperature to 200 °F and keep in oven until it is time to eat. Heat in the oven for about 5 minutes before serving.