Hye Thyme Cafe: Armenian Stuffed Onions

Welcome to the Hy
e Thyme Cafe. Although not all of my recipes are Armenian, the name is a little nod to my Armenian grandmother who is no longer with us. The Hye refers to all things related to her homeland, and she represents all things food-related to me, so the two just seemed to go together. I can't even claim that my Armenian recipes are truly Armenian, since Greece, Turkey, Armenia, Lebanon, Syria, and even Egypt share so many foods that they've all sort of morphed into one over thousands of years.

Whether you like to cook, bake, have never done either, or just like to play with your food...come on in and join me! :)


Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Armenian Stuffed Onions

Armenian Stuffed Onions : Hye Thyme Cafe

I don't actually know anyone who makes stuffed onions, Armenian or otherwise. The reason I referred to these as Armenian is that I used the ingredients we use for Losh Kebab (the Armenian equivalent of a Hamburger) as the filling. We had chicken the past few nights, and I was trying to think of something that didn't involve carbs since one of the chicken dishes was a pasta dish; this is what came to mind. They were very good, but at the same time, they didn't taste like Losh Kebab for some reason. Maybe there's more to grilling than I thought? If you were to form the filling into patties, you would grill or broil them for burgers.

INGREDIENTS:
Large onions *
1 sm green bell pepper
1 lb ground beef
1 lb ground lamb
Juice of 1 small lemon
2 T tomato paste
1 t allspice
Fresh chopped parsley
salt and pepper


Start by coring your onions, so you are left with just the outermost layer or two. Cut the root end to level it, then slice off the top and pull out the middle. Maybe this shouldn't have been a concern, but I wanted to keep the bottom intact - that proved to be trickier than I had anticipated. I started by using an iced tea spoon to pull out the center bulb, then used a paring knife to remove a small section so I could pull the rest out more easily. The problem came in trying not to pop the bottom out along with the layers.



Once that is done, stream the onions in 1/2" inch of water for about 10" to soften them, then remove from heat, drain, and set aside.




While your onions are steaming, petite dice your pepper, chop the filling from two of your onions (reserving the rest for another preparation or freezing for later use), and chop your parsley.

Over medium heat, using just a tablespoon of butter or olive oil to get them going, sweat your peppers and onions, seasoning with a little salt and plenty of black pepper.

When the peppers/onions start to cook down, add the beef and lamb, breaking them up and cooking until just a bit of pink is still showing - it will finish in the oven. 


 








Turn off the heat and stir in the tomato paste, lemon juice, parsley, and allspice. I used a half bunch of parsley, but plan to increase it next time.

Armenian Stuffed Onions : Hye Thyme Cafe


Spoon the filling into the onion shells, packing it in well so they keep their shape. Bake at 350 for 25-30". You can serve them as is, or top them with a dollop of plain Greek yogurt and a sprinkling of additional parsley, or fresh chopped mint. [My "dressed" pics didn't work out - the yogurt was too bright, but here's a naked onion ...]


Armenian Stuffed Onions : Hye Thyme Cafe


* I prepared 4 onions (two vidalia and two red) and had enough filling left for about 4 more, so you can either increase the number of onions, decrease the amount of filling, or re-purpose the leftovers. I think I might add some crushed tomatoes to mine later in the week and serve it over pasta.

10 comments:

  1. Wow! I had this dish but rice was included in the ingredients, the sweetness of the onion after it's cooked gives amazing flavor. Thanks for sharing the recipe!

    Muna

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    Replies
    1. We also to a different version with rice. I've always had that in tomatoes, peppers, and zucchini. I had never stuffed an onion before. The other dish is called Dolma (like stuffed grapeleaves are dolmades). I've certainly stuffed a bazillion grapeleaves over they ears. Cabbage is another popular one, but I'm not partial to cabbage myself.

      http://hyethymecafe.blogspot.com/2010/10/dolma-armenian-stuffed-veggies.html

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  2. yummy! I've never tried stuffed onions. I have had stuffed peppers before and they are pretty good. I'll have to try this sometime. On a side note - I know I have told you this before, but I love that picture of your grandmother. Every time I visit your blog I find myself just sitting here looking at her. I'm kind of weird. But still. It is fascinating to me.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Awww, that's so sweet! The cool thing about that pic is that I blew up copies of that one and a few others in the series (engagement pics), and I saw that she is wearing a ring she gave me when I was a kid. :)

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  3. My daughter is a picky eater but surprisingly, loves onions. This sounds like a great recipe to encourage her to eat meat and such a creative alternative to stuffed peppers!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We've got some picky eaters in our house too. None of the guys were around, so I got to sneak in some lamb for a change. :)

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  4. We made stuffed onions here, with a variety of onions called salamouni; they are elongated like big shallots and their taste is mild; tasted just delicious with a meat and rice stuffing; love yours and the presentation~

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I've never heard of the salamouni before. We have Vidalia onions, which used to be so sweet you could practically eat one like an apple, but as time goes on, they seem to be getting stronger and stronger.

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  5. An Armenian friend , years ago, brought me stuffed sweet validia onion, that she roasted along side some "smaller cabbage leaves". So delicious! Being "polish", we have our version", (sauce made with tomato sauce mixed with undiluted tomatoe soup(must be "Campbells brand).Anyway, she also , "pourd a "beth broth" seasoned, over the smaller cabbage rools and the sweet smaller onions.
    So different, so delicious! Sometimes, I sorta do an "Armenian" day"...Making Rice Pilaf/Taboulee, stuffed grape leaves(meat & meatless) with that "creamy lemony sauce"...Yes, these "recipes" are made in all the different regions close to Armenia. Syrian, Lebanese, etc.
    I love all "ethnic food", and these are recipes, no matter WHAT "nationality you are"...Should be shared and enjoyed as a "special treat!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's so true - I love that so many cultures share their cuisines and put their own regional spin on them. You're one up on me - I've never made grape leaves with a meat filling. I think the men in the family would revolt, they love my rice-filled ones so much. I barely get away with making spinach pilaf on occasion. Tough crowd! :)

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