Stuffed Onion Leaves

This dish takes some of time for preparation, but it is not complicated, and the results are spectacular.

4 or 5 very large yellow onions
Place the whole unpeeled onions (the larger the better) in a pot, and cover with water. Bring the water to a boil; then turn down to a simmer. Cover, and simmer the onions for 20 minutes. Remove, drain, and cool the onions so that you can handle them.

2 cups long-grain rice, soaked in water for 2 hour, then drained

1 pound ground lean lamb or beef (I used a half and half mixture)
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon ground allspice
Fresh-ground pepper and salt to taste
3 ripe tomatoes, diced
Olive oil
3 cups beef stock

Mix together the lamb and beef. Add the cinnamon, cumin, coriander, allspice, pepper, salt, and rice. Mix well, and then add the tomatoes. Gently mix again, being careful not to squeeze the juice out of the tomatoes.

For an interesting variation you might also add some dried dill weed and some cardamom to the filling. This would make the dish very Moroccan.

Cut the top and the bottom from the cooked unpeeled onions.

Slice into the onion by making a cut down the side of the onion that goes to the center of the onion. Remove the outer skin, and then, very carefully, remove the large outer leaves of the onion.
(Save the center of the onion, the core, for some other dish.)

You will get about five or six leaves from each large onion.

Place a bit of the filling in the middle of each onion leaf, and roll it up like a sausage. The skins will practically roll themselves, so let the onion do the work.

When all are rolled, select a large frying pan with a tight ­fitting lid (a heavy kettle will do also; you need something large enough to hold all the onion rolls in one layer).

When the pan is hot, add a bit of olive oil and then the stuffed onions, all in one layer.

Cook for a few minutes on medium heat until they begin barely to brown on the bottom. Add the beef stock, and cover.

Simmer for 40 minutes, and serve.

Stuffed Onion Leaves




Prep 30m
Cook 2h 30m
Ready in 3h 15m

1 pound sweet Italian sausage
3/4 pound lean ground beef
1/2 cup minced onion
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 28 ounce can crushed tomatoes
2 6 ounce cans tomato paste
2 6.5 ounce cans tomato sauce
1/2 cup red wine
2 tablespoons white sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons dried basil leaves
1/2 teaspoon fennel seed
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
4 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
12 lasagna noodles
16 ounces ricotta cheese
2 eggs
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 pound shredded mozzarella cheese
3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

In a Dutch oven, cook sausage, ground beef, onion, and garlic over medium heat until well browned. Drain fat. Stir in crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, tomato sauce, and red wine. Season with sugar, basil, fennel seed, Italian seasoning, 1 tablespoon salt, pepper, and 2 tablespoons parsley.

Simmer, covered, for about 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally.

Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Cook lasagna noodles in boiling water for 8 to 10 minutes. Drain noodles, and rinse with cold water.

In a mixing bowl, combine ricotta cheese with egg, remaining parsley, and 1/2 teaspoon salt.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

To assemble, spread 1 1/2 cups of meat sauce in the bottom of a 9×13 inch baking dish. Arrange 6 noodles lengthwise over meat sauce.

Spread with one half of the ricotta cheese mixture. Top with a third of the shredded mozzarella cheese.

Spoon 1 1/2 cups meat sauce over mozzarella and sprinkle with 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese.

Repeat layers, and top with remaining mozzarella and Parmesan cheese. Cover with foil. To prevent sticking, spray the foil with cooking spray.

Bake in preheated oven for 25 minutes. Remove foil, and bake an additional 25 minutes. Cool for 15 minutes before serving.

Homemade Lasagna


Homemade Lasagna


English Tea Cucumber Sandwiches

“A refreshing and delicious sandwich. Depending on the way you cut the bread, these can be made as appetizers or a simple lunch time sandwich.”

Sliced Cucumbers

Sliced Cucumbers

1 cucumber, peeled and thinly sliced
1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon onion salt
1 dash Worcestershire sauce
1 (1 pound) loaf sliced bread, crusts removed
1 pinch lemon pepper (optional)

Place cucumber slices between 2 paper towels set in a colander. Allow liquid to drain, about 10 minutes.

Mix cream cheese, mayonnaise, garlic powder, onion salt, and Worcestershire sauce in a bowl until smooth.

Spread cream cheese mixture evenly on one side of each bread slice.

Divide cucumber slices over half of the bread slices; sprinkle lemon pepper on cucumber.

Stack the other half of the bread slices with spread sides down over the cucumber slices to make sandwiches.