herb-roasted onions

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I’m pretty sure I’m the worst yoga-er ever. I think it provides a pretty good workout, but, honestly, it kind of bores me. I know I’m supposed to get all meditative and stuff, but I don’t, and I end up bored, and I end up not doing yoga at all, and that’s no good.

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So my new trick is to watch the Food Network while I do yoga. See? Worst yoga-er ever.

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But if I think of yoga as “ooh, I get to watch Barefoot Contessa!” instead of “bleah, exercise”, I actually look forward to it. I recently saw her make chicken piccata, buttermilk mashed potatoes, and roasted onions, and I decided right there, in the middle of the warrior series, that I was making the whole meal that weekend.

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The buttermilk mashed potatoes were just as good as you’d expect (in other words, very, although I didn’t follow her recipe to a tee), and the chicken was actually a big failure, but the onions were what really stole the show. They get two major hits of flavor, a quick soak in lemony herb mustard vinaigrette before baking, and then another dip in the same dressing after they’re cooked.

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This was my first experience serving onions on their own instead of as a support to a dish’s main flavor, and, damn! I’ve been missing out. I really do love onions when they’re soft and caramelized, and the dressing brightened and enhanced the onions’ own sweetness. All that and stretchier muscles. Not bad for half an hour of watching television.

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Printer Friendly Recipe
Herb-Roasted Onions
(from Barefoot Contessa)

2 red onions
1 yellow onion
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon minced garlic
½ tablespoon minced fresh thyme leaves
¾ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
¼ cup good olive oil
½ tablespoon minced fresh parsley leaves

1. Preheat the oven to 400F.

2. Remove the stem end of each onion and carefully slice off the brown part of the root end, leaving the root intact. Peel the onion. Stand each onion root end up on a cutting board and cut the onion in wedges through the root. Place the wedges in a bowl.

3. For the dressing, combine the lemon juice, mustard, garlic, thyme, salt, and pepper in a large bowl. Slowly whisk in the olive oil. Pour the dressing over the onions and toss well.

4. With a slotted spoon, transfer the onions to a sheet pan, reserving the vinaigrette that remains in the bowl. Bake the onions for 30 to 45 minutes, until tender and browned. Toss the onions once during cooking. Remove from the oven, and drizzle with the reserved dressing. Sprinkle with parsley, season to taste and serve warm or at room temperature.

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  1. No worries! Yoga isn’t for everyone – same way running, swimming, etc. isn’t for everyone. I believe we’re all built differently to embrace different forms of movement.

    Alright, enough “zen” stuff, haha – amen to watching Food Network ANY time, and for making onions the star of the meal 🙂

  2. Sara L says:

    Jason would love this but since Blake has decided he hates onions, I probably won’t make it anytime soon. I refuse to cater to a 3-year old’s tastes by eating pizza and spaghetti at every meal, but I don’t want to torture him either.

  3. Wow, I usually just add onions as an after thought when roasting other veggies. I never think to make them the focal point of roasting! Looks and sounds delicious.

    I second Veggiegirl! And, I am with you on the yoga. I can do it, but it bores me too. I think if most programs were an hour instead of 90 minutes, it wouldn’t be so bad, but 90 is waaaay too long to hold my attention. I pretty much always skip the meditation at the end. I don’t lead a stressful life 🙂

  4. Melissa says:

    That’s a fantastic idea! Maybe I should take up yoga while watching TV as well. It’s better than just sitting in front of the TV at least!
    It’s too bad about the chicken though. What made it such a flop?

  5. bridget says:

    Melissa – The lemon flavor in the chicken was just totally overbearing. I kept trying to add other ingredients to the sauce to tone it down, but still had to settle for using just the barest amount of the sauce on it, and it still dominated the meal. Afterward, I read the reviews on the Food Network site, and apparently that was a pretty common problem.

  6. It’s really, really funny you posted this today. Last night I made Nigella Lawson’s recipe for Chicken and Sausage with Sage and Onions (not sure if that is the exact title, but close) and even though I normally hate onions, they are my favorite part of this dish. And guess what the chicken and onions are marinated in? Mustard and lemon juice. I’ve often thought of just making the onion, forget the chicken. I might do that with your recipe!

  7. I love onions when they have cooked for a long time. They get sweet and delicious….yum!

  8. These look so good! I love onions, but I usually roast or grill them. I’ll have to try them this way!

  9. Hah, I have to try that sometime. Then maybe I can escape the shackles of whoever chooses the channel at the gym (though sometimes it is the food network. But I hate most of their programming now!). Sorry the chicken was strange, but thank goodness for these onions, huh? 🙂

  10. I love onions! These sound fantastic, I wonder if I could get my husband to appreciate them…

  11. I love, love, love onions so I’ll be bookmarking these for sure!! Don’t feel bad, yoga bores me too 🙂

  12. Oh man, those onions look fantastic! I’m pretty sure I could eat a plate of them on their own. And no worries, I’ve quite literally fallen asleep at a yoga class before…and had to be woken up by the instructor, amidst a sea of glaring yogis. Not awkward at all…