Thursday, January 28, 2010

Baked Onion Rings

My husband and I picked up some natural casing hot dogs from a local farm at the farmer's market last weekend. Looking for a side to go with them, I remembered watching an episode of Everyday Food a week or two ago on Create, and thought these Baked Onion Rings were the perfect side.

I made a couple small changes to Martha Stewart's recipe-I used canola oil instead of olive oil and reduced the cooking time to 10 to 12 minutes. The smoke point of olive oil is 375 degrees F (canola ranges from 464 to 475 degrees F, depending on the type) so if you use olive oil in a 450 degree F oven, you will fill the oven with smoke. My onion rings would have been burnt to a crisp after 16 minutes, but I suspect my onion runs a bit hot. Just keep an eye on your

I chose the baked onion rings over deep-fried onion rings for a couple of reasons. One, these are obviously healthier. Two, I didn't want to use cups of oil in my Fry Daddy because I probably wouldn't get around to deep-frying anything else, especially that could go in the oil after onions, before the oil went rancid.

Baked Onion Rings
adapted from Everyday Food

1 1/2 cups cornflakes
1/2 cup plain dried breadcrumbs
1 large egg
1/2 cup low-fat buttermilk (I used Saco powdered buttermilk, reconstituted)
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Coarse salt and ground pepper
1 medium sweet onion, such as Vidalia, quartered crosswise and broken into rings (discard small center rings)
2 tablespoons canola or vegetable oil

1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. In a food processor, pulse cornflakes and breadcrumbs until fine crumbs form, then transfer to a medium bowl. In another medium bowl, whisk together egg, buttermilk, flour, and cayenne and season with salt and pepper. 

2. Dip onion rings in egg mixture (letting excess drip off) and dredge in cornflake mixture; place on a large plate. Pour oil onto a rimmed baking sheet. Place in oven and heat 2 minutes. Remove sheet from oven and tilt to coat evenly with oil. Arrange onion rings on sheet. Bake, turning once, until onion rings are golden brown, about 10 to 12 minutes. Season with salt.


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