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Smoked Mackerel and Pearl Onion Dip

A bowl of delicious homemade smoked mackerel dip with caramelized onions and smoked paprika.

Fall weather has officially kicked in which means some of you may be wanting to bring the game day party indoors. When it gets too cold to break out the grill, party dips are always a safe bet. This week’s recipe pays homage to both the classic French onion dip and smoked mackerel dip with a little twist by tying them together into one out-of-this-world appetizer. The mildly sweet flavors of the pearl onions are intensified by roasting them in the oven and are combined with the smokey flavors of the mackerel. The result is a creamy dip that’s simply addicting when eaten with potato chips or crackers. You can enjoy this recipe in front of the television or if the weather permits a tailgating event, make it ahead of time to serve alongside the rest of your game day spread.

Small, petite Pearl Onions are one of our favorite onions to work with. Don’t be intimidated by the prospect of having to peel them. We cover how to do so in just a couple simple steps in this recipe. And believe us, they’re well worth the effort! Pearl onions contain a mild, sweet flavor with a similar bite to boiler onions, though smaller in size.  Both happen to be sweeter than regular sized onions, which makes them a neat ingredient to use in this game day worthy dip. They’re available in white, red and gold varieties and are a favorite to use in not only creaming and pickling but also for cooking into casseroles and stews. Perfect for the fall and winter seasons when you’re craving something a little more comforting!

Smoked Mackerel and Pearl Onion Dip

Yields: 6 to 8 servings


1. Begin by roasting your pearl onions. Scatter the onions onto a baking sheet and coat with olive oil, Kosher salt and pepper. Roast them in the oven for around 30 minutes.

2. Allow for them to cool before peeling. Once they have cooled off, cut the root end of the onion with a sharp knife and squeeze the onion out of its skin.

3. Roughly chop the onions with a knife until you have small pieces. You can also pulse them in a food processor to make this step easier.

4. Place the chopped into a large bowl. Mix with the rest of the ingredients, stirring together the smoked mackerel, Greek yogurt, chives, lemon juice, garlic powder, paprika and more salt and pepper to taste, if needed.

5. Sprinkle on more chives on top of the dip for garnish. Serve with potato chips or crackers for dipping.

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