This month’s Recipe Redux challenge is in honor of 2016 coming to a close. We were challenged to:
“Grab a Book & Cook – We’re playing a little party game at the end of 2016: Grab your nearest cookbook and ReDux the recipe on page 201, 16, 216 – or any combination of the number ‘2016.’”
My nearest cookbook was The Foothills Cuisine of Blackberry Farm by Sam Beall (which was given to me recently by my future in-laws- thank you!), so I flipped to page 216 and found a menu, of which the first recipe was for “Butter Braised Cipollini Onions with Arugula and Balsamic Syrup on Mountain Multi-grain Toast.” That sounded like a pretty darn good light dinner; as an added bonus, I had received some red onions and arugula from Boston Organics that week and had just purchased some whole wheat bread from Great Harvest that was sitting in the freezer, waiting to be used.
This recipe has a lot of moving parts and involved steps, which I had no interest in re-creating on a busy weeknight. I decided to combine a few steps and make one cohesive, rich topping of wilted arugula with balsamic-and-butter caramelized onions.
To increase the nutritional value of this already-admirable meal, I used 100% whole wheat bread instead of multigrain bread, because (if you’ve ever talked to me before you already know this) the term “multi-grain” just means that there are multiple types of grain in the bread and indicates nothing about their wholeness or nutritive value (marketing!). I also added a layer of goat cheese for deliciousness and a bit of protein. As an added bonus to combining steps, wilting the arugula instead of using it raw meant being able to pack a lot more greens on top of a piece of toast- we covered far more than half our plates in vegetables that night!
This quick and light meal was the perfect end to a busy day. The richness of the goat cheese perfectly contrasted with the spicy arugula and sweet-fatty onions, and the toast was a very efficient and satisfying delivery system. I’d highly recommend the recipe and the cookbook to anyone!
- 2 small red onions
- 2 Tbsp good quality butter, divided
- 1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 1/2 tsp sugar
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 1-2 slices 100% whole wheat bread
- 2 oz goat cheese
- 3 cups arugula
- Flake salt, optional
- Slice the onions into half moons and place in a small sauce pan with 1/2 of the butter and begin to cook over medium heat, stirring frequently.
- When onions begin to soften, sprinkle in the balsamic and the sugar. Continue to cook, stirring frequently, for 15-20 minutes.
- Meanwhile, toast the slices of bread. Spread 1 oz of goat cheese in a thick layer on each slice.
- Add the rest of the butter to the softened onions and season the onions with salt and pepper. Continue to cook until browned and softened to your tastes.
- Just before serving, add the wilted arugula to the onions. Turn off the heat and stir to lightly wilt the greens.
- Top the toast with generous portions of the arugula-onion mixture. Sprinkle flake salt on top, if desired. Slice into triangles and enjoy!