Last year at this time, I was teaching a cooking class on healthy hors d’oeuvres and appetizers. This year, the woman who organized the group was interested in a different topic.
“How about tapas?” she asked.
Sure, I knew what tapas were… but was I comfortable teaching a class on the subject? To be honest, I needed to do a little research to be confident I was passing on correct information. …so after the call, I headed over to Barnes & Noble to pick up a book on the topic, choosing this one:
Author José Andrés owns seven restaurants in Washington D.C., was named Best Chef in the Mid-Atlantic region in 2003 by the James Beard Foundation, and has been featured in a number of food magazines. This guy knows what he is talking about.
…oh, and you can win a copy. Get the entry details near the end of this post.
This post (as well as the next three) will feature four tapas I’ve selected from the cookbook to present to the class. The first one I’ll talk about is a delicious recipe for Roasted Spanish Onions with Gorgonzola and Chives. The original recipe from the book uses Vidalia onions, but they were out of season at the time I tested this recipe… hence the Spanish onions.
This is a fairly simple dish, just a few ingredients. …most of the time, simple is best.
Start by slicing up your onions. Think of the onion as the Earth, and the top and root as the north and south poles. Find the equator of the onion, and make your slices parallel to it.
Andrés suggests drizzling your onions in extra-virgin Spanish olive oil. According to this magical tool I found on the internet, Spain is 3,645.9 miles away from my home in greater Binghamton, NY. …so I’m using canola oil.
Rub your onions down in the oil, and place them in a 350°F oven for 30 to 40 minutes, or until golden brown. In the meantime…
…make a little dressing. Combine your egg yolk, vinegar, and salt, and whisk to combine. Slowly drizzle in the oil (again, canola is as fancy as we’re getting here), whisking the entire time.
A note about food safety: this dressing contains raw egg yolk, which does not get cooked prior to eating. This is common in a lot of dressings, but if you don’t like the idea of it, don’t eat it. Instead, use your favorite dressing.
Toss the greens with some of the dressing in a bowl. Restaurants like to do this because it evenly coats the leaves, rather than having a large amount of dressing on one leaf and none on another. Start with a little dressing, you can always add more.
When your onions are beautifully brown, take them out and set one or two on top of the greens. Sprinkle with a little gorgonzola and chives, and enjoy! The recipe below has been adapted from the Tapas book by José Andrés.
Roasted Spanish Onions with Gorgonzola and Chives (serves 4)
- 2 spanish onions
- canola oil for drizzling on onions
- 1 pasteurized egg yolk
- 1/2 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
- salt to taste
- 3 tablespoons canola oil
- lettuce greens
- gorgonzola cheese as needed
- chives as needed
- Cut the onions into slices and drizzle with canola oil. Bake for 30-40 minutes in a 350°F oven, or until golden brown.
- To make the dressing, combine the egg yolk, vinegar, and salt. Mix to combine, then rapidly whisk in the 3 tablespoons of canola oil in a slow stream. This dressing contains raw egg yolks, eat at your own discretion or substitute your favorite dressing.
- Dress the greens in the dressing, and set the golden brown onions on top. Sprinkle with the gorgonzola and chives as needed.