Warm Roasted Red Onion Salad with Spicy Walnut Pickle Dressing

14 Jun

As most of you will already know, I am a huge fan of Yotam Ottolenghi. Obsessed would be an appropriate word for it. His Mediterrasian recipes (a mix of Middle Eastern & Mediterranean) combine all of my favourite ingredients and flavours in a way that is impossible to resist. This is one of said recipes. It came up on my Twitter feed from The Guardian food section a few Sundays ago and I knew that I wanted to make it straight away.

Don’t you love it when that happens? You are pondering what to make for lunch with the (sometimes) minimal contents of your fridge. You stumble across a recipe that you are desperate to make and you actually have all the ingredients in the house. Food Serendipity I like to call it, and it makes me smile.

Warm Roasted Red Onion Salad with Spicy Walnut Pickle Dressing

Serves 2, vegetarian/vegan, gluten-free. Adapted from Yotam Ottolenghi at The Guardian

  • 2 medium red onions
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • salt and black pepper
  •  rocket/watercress or mixed leaves
  • a handful of coriander/parsley leaves
  • some crumbled Greek feta or goat’s cheese (optional)

For the Walnut Pickle Dressing:

  • 30g walnuts, chopped
  • 1/2 0r 1 red chilli (depending how hot) deseeded & finely chopped
  • 1/2 garlic clove, peeled and crushed
  • 3 tsp sherry vinegar (or red wine vinegar)
  • 1 + 1/2 tsp olive oil

Preheat the oven to 200 C. Peel the onions and cut off the tops and bottoms. Cut each onion widthways into two or three slices about 2cm thick (see pic. above) and place on a baking tray lined with baking paper. Brush with olive oil, season with salt and black pepper, and roast for about 20 minutes, until cooked and golden-brown on top. If they haven’t browned much you can pop them under the grill for a few minutes. Set aside to cool slightly.

While the onions are cooking, put all the ingredients for the walnut pickle in a small bowl, season with salt & black pepper, stir and set aside. It gets better the longer you leave it.

To serve, put the salad leaves and most of the coriander/parsley in bowl, tip over about half of the walnut pickle and toss to coat evenly. Divide this between your serving plates, arrange the onion slices on top, tip over some more walnut pickle, crumble over the feta and finish with some more coriander/parsley leaves.

This spicy, robust salad is perfect as a lunch dish on its own but would also be a fantastic accompaniment to a spring/summer Sunday roast (especially beef), if you can’t be bothered with all those potatoes and vegetables. It’s a lighter and easier option for this time of year and is equally good served warm or  at room temperature. The onions could even be done on the barbecue and served as a side dish alfresco if the weather is being kind to you…..

Back By Popular Demand…..

Things That Made Me Smile Today 

Rufus enjoying our favourite hill walk, a treat for all his fans out there epsecially you Greg.

While we enjoyed the wild flowers too…..

Have a great weekend!

20 Responses to “Warm Roasted Red Onion Salad with Spicy Walnut Pickle Dressing”

  1. kellieanderson June 14, 2012 at 5:09 pm #

    I always live a bit of Yotam! This is a handsome looking adaptation of an already pretty lovely recipe. I try never to look at his books or his Guardian & Waitrose columns except on a full stomach 😉

    • kellieanderson June 14, 2012 at 5:09 pm #

      Oops! Clumsy fingers meant to type ‘love’ not ‘live’!

  2. spree June 14, 2012 at 6:06 pm #

    I’m a huge fan of Ottolenghi too, and I love the looks of your salad here! Very nicely done, and so pretty too! Have a great weekend Natalie! Rufus looks like a rambunctious fun companion!

  3. ceciliag June 14, 2012 at 7:22 pm #

    That is a stunning salad and i have red onions in the garden, not quite big enough yet but SOON, until then i have jetted down this dressing.. lovely.. c

  4. Conor Bofin June 14, 2012 at 8:33 pm #

    I find myself drooling over this recipe. Particularly impressive as I have just posted a very non vegetarian barbecued leg of lamb.
    Lovely post,

  5. Chica Andaluza June 14, 2012 at 11:32 pm #

    Beautiful – I love red onion and we have grown plenty this year!

  6. Steph@stephsbitebybite June 15, 2012 at 12:01 am #

    So, I’m weird and absolutely LOVE onions! And this idea is so awesome!! Hubby’s gonna have to deal with onion breath!

  7. Three Well Beings June 15, 2012 at 1:05 am #

    I think I have all the ingredients, too! This just fits a summer night. Good to see Rufus, too! Haven’t visited him in awhile! Debra

  8. Kelly June 15, 2012 at 1:27 am #

    Umm I need this in my life ASAP. Amazing!

  9. Rufus' Food and Spirits Guide June 15, 2012 at 1:34 am #

    Yay!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! An action shot. I was going to say how great those onions look, but onions shcmunions. They can’t compete with Rufus. Thanks for the smile.

  10. Priya Sreeram (@priyasreeram) June 15, 2012 at 2:08 am #

    the dressing and the combo have my attention ! good one 🙂

  11. peasepudding June 17, 2012 at 3:28 am #

    Yum, I want that walnut pickle in my fridge for summer salads, I mustn’t forget about it when summer comes around. Very cold here but sunny!

  12. beryl eichenberger June 24, 2012 at 3:42 pm #

    Love the onion salad – rthank you

  13. Sacre Foie! September 10, 2012 at 8:31 am #

    Nice post, photo’s look good enough to eat!

  14. sybaritica December 12, 2012 at 9:32 pm #

    I love the idea of the roasted red onions and the dressing is relly interesting. I wonder if pine-nuts might work well too?

    • Natalie Ward December 12, 2012 at 11:29 pm #

      I think pine nuts are fab on anything, so probably!

  15. FoodorFoeMagazine January 23, 2013 at 11:51 pm #

    Oooo this sounds lovely! A great pick-me-up during winter. Here at Food or Foe, we are trying to see what new flavour combinations we can make, and we found that coffee goes well with red onion! http://foodorfoemagazine.wordpress.com/2013/01/23/29/ Although our recipe wasn’t a success as such, we would definitely think about adding some coffee flavours to the dressing. What do you think?

    • Natalie Ward January 24, 2013 at 9:54 am #

      I’m not sure 😉 Maybe try caramelising the walnuts with a bit of coffee & brown sugar and use them as a crunchy topping. At least then you can pick them off if it’s horrid and you haven’t ruined the whole dish! Let me know how it goes….

      • FoodorFoeMagazine January 24, 2013 at 10:57 am #

        That’s a fantastic idea! We sure will let you know how it goes! Thanks.


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