03 February 2010

Wild Rice Stuffed Onions

The recipe for these wild rice stuffed onions was passed to me by my friend Anna the last time I was complaining that I was bored of my usual side dishes.  I've made them twice since I got my hands on this recipe, and everyone who has tried them adores them!

After cooking the rice with a mirepoix (that classic combo of carrots, celery, and onions), you stuff partly-cooked, hollowed out onions with the rice mixture, then bake in the oven.  Served in its onion shell, this side dish is pretty enough to grace a holiday dinner table, but easy enough to serve on a weeknight when you've got some extra time.

Wild Rice Stuffed Onions
makes 6 servings

6 large onions  (Spanish or Vidalia work well)
1-1/2 c. long grain wild rice
3 c. water
2 tbsp. butter
2 carrots, finely chopped
2 celery stalks, finely chopped
dried sage & dried thyme
poultry seasoning
salt & pepper

Preheat oven to 425.

Slice a very small piece off the "bottom" of the onion - that would be the end with the stringy roots.  This will make the onion sit flat in its baking dish.  Slice off a slightly larger piece of the top (the part that comes to a papery point).  Remove the skin from the top piece and set it aside.  Remove the skin from the onion.  Repeat this with all six onions.

Using a knife, make a conical cut into the middle of the onion.  Be careful not to cut too far into it, as you want to preserve the sides and bottom as a shell.  You will want at least two rings of onion to remain so that it stays sturdy enough to hold the rice.  Remove the cone, then use a spoon to core the onion, taking care to leave at least 1/2" at the bottom.  Chop the onion that you removed from the cores, set aside.

Combine water and rice, bring to a boil.  Drop the heat to a simmer, stir, and cover the rice for approximately 25 minutes, stirring occasionally.

In the meantime, place the onions (without their tops) in a lightly greased baking dish.  Bake in the oven for 25 minutes.  Remove the onions and drop the oven heat to 375 degrees. 

While onions are baking and rice is cooking, heat the butter in a very large skillet over medium high heat.  Add the carrots, celery, and about 1/2 cup of the chopped onion.  Reserve the remaining onion for another use.  Season with herbs, poultry seasoning, and salt and pepper. 

When the rice is cooked, add it to the skillet.  Stir to combine the rice with the vegetables, then remove pan from the heat.


Using a large spoon, stuff the onions with the vegetable-rice mixture.  Mound up the tops slightly.

Place the reserved "tops" onto the onions and place them back in the oven (now at 375 degrees) for about 20 minutes.  
I think these would be really good filled with stuffing for Thanksgiving, or with orzo in pesto sauce...the possibilities are endless!  Thanks again to Anna for such a beautiful recipe!

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