The onions are slow-cooked, making them very sweet and extra delicious with the inclusion of cheese, pancetta and roasted capsicums.
- 4 medium brown, white or red onions (or use a mixture)
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 100 g (3½ oz) pancetta, preferably in one thick slice
- 50 g (1¾ oz) coarsely grated provolone
- 100 g (3½ oz) coarsely grated mozzarella
- 30 g (1 oz) butter, diced
- 2 tbsp chopped roasted red capsicum (bell pepper) (store-bought is fine)
- ½ tsp sweet paprika
- sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 spring onion (scallion), thinly sliced, to garnish
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
1. Preheat a barbecue hotplate to medium.
2. Cut 1 cm (½ in) off the tops of the onions, then peel and discard the skin. Using a small, sharp knife, cut 5 mm (¼ in) off the opposite end of each onion and discard. Use the knife to scoop out about 1 tablespoon of flesh from each onion. Finely chop the scooped-out onion and set aside in a bowl.
3. Rub the olive oil over the pancetta and cook on the barbecue for 5 minutes on each side, until golden. Set aside to cool.
4. Finely chop the pancetta, then add to the bowl with the chopped onion. Add both cheeses, the butter, capsicum and paprika, then season well with salt and pepper and combine.
5. Spoon one-quarter of the mixture into each onion, pressing in firmly.
6. Reduce the barbecue heat to low.
7. Transfer the onions to a shallow baking tin, cover with foil and place on the barbecue. Close the lid and cook for 1 hour, or until the onions are very soft and cooked through.
8. Scatter the spring onion over the top and serve straight away.
Recipe from The Food of Argentina by Ross Dobson and Rachel Tolosa Paz, Smith Street Books, RRP $44.99