The inspiration behind this recipe came from, as is often the case with me when I have a glut of a particular vegetable or ingredient after a shoot. If you are a regular reader of this blog you will know that I love to do fairly fuss-free recipes and I adore vegetables. They are so inexpensive and nourishing, if you cook them in new and interesting ways they can take centre stage on your table and have so much potential. You only have to read Ottolenghi’s ‘Plenty’ to know what I mean.
A while ago I tested the most amazing onion gratin, and last week I made a fabulous cheats ‘pissaladiere’. So born out of those and these roasted onions, here is the start of a short series of recipes where onion is at the forefront of the dish.
Simply cut a cross in the top of your onions making sure you don’t cut all the way through (about half to 3/4 of the way down). I have used red onions as they are sweeter but white onions would also be very nice. I have left the skin on as this serves as a protective outer layer while they cook. I also trimmed the root ends slightly so they would stand up.
Cover the base of the dish with beef stock (or use vegetable stock if you want to make these vegetarian), and drizzle olive oil over the onions. Scatter thyme leaves over (stalks and a few leaves pulled off the stalk), and add a pinch of sea salt flakes and roast in a medium-hot oven (190 C) for about an hour until they are soft on the inside. You could take it to 90 minutes if you really want them soft and silky on the inside. I almost feel that you can never over-roast an onion.
I love roasted onions any way you do them and here are a few ideas to serve these with:
- as an accompaniment to any roast (beef, chicken or pork)
- peeled and stirred through pasta with loads of grated Parmesan
- as a cheese course with goats cheese (which goes so well with onions)
- added to your macaroni and cheese or any other appropriate pasta dish with sauce
- scattered over a salad
- added to a sandwich, pita or wrap
- served at a braai / BBQ
How do you like your onions?
To see my other onion recipes – take a look at these links:
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