Last night we decided on eating hamburger steaks, baked potatoes and a salad on the side. When I was getting my potatoes out, I noticed the onions, so I swapped the salad for a baked onion. The first time I ate one was probably 35 years ago. They were a specialty of my best friends Paula and Sheila's Daddy, Otis. He'd fix steak, baked potatoes which we would smother in "that stuff" (which was actually home-made Ranch dressing, but they were doing it way before anyone I ever heard of doing it) and baked onions. Dot would fix a lettuce and tomato salad that I always loved. I never was sure what she used to dress it with, but I loved it. I'll have to ask her the next time I talk to her. It was white, so it was probably mayonnaise and salt and pepper, but whatever it was, it was so good!
My first choice for onions is to use Vidalia. We can't get them here yet, but I'm counting the days! If you can't get the best, be sure you get a SWEET onion. I'm not saying a plain old white or yellow can't be used, I'm saying there is a difference period. From when you smell them baking to your first bite; you will think you are in heaven! The combination of sweet onion, that little bit of carmelization and the melted butter....mmm, mmm, mmm!
Quarter your onions, but don't cut all the way through. Place on a sheet of aluminum foil.
Top with two pats of unsalted butter and season with salt & pepper.
Bring up the sides of the aluminum foil and twist at the top. Be sure it's sealed well so the juices don't run out. Place on a baking sheet with the potatoes you will be baking.
In a preheated 425 degree oven, bake for 1 hour*.
The idea is for the onion to be tender but not mush. Check after 30 minutes or when you can smell the onion. As always, the size of the onion may cause the baking time to vary.