I sometimes find myself craving deep-fried food; deliciously, evil things like onion rings, fries or even tempura. But often, after I have a few bites, I find that the fried food just doesn’t sit that well. That’s why, I think, sometimes baking is a great alternative. Granted, I don’t think this is always the case, I don’t know that a baked elephant ear would taste as good a fried one (or hey, maybe I should try that), but quite often, I like the baked alternative just as much, if not better.
The last time my parents were at A&W on the way out to our lake cabin, they picked up some official A&W seasoning. We thought it would be fun to make some “A&W” style hamburgers out at the lake. Well, what goes better with A&W burgers than onion rings? I had no interest in deep frying, so I did a little searching on the internet and came across a bunch of different recipes for oven baked onion rings. I ended up using this recipe from Martha Stewart for the inspiration for my A&W “ish” onion rings, but made a few changes based on the ingredients I had on hand.
Oven Baked Onion Rings
– 1 1/2 cups panko
– 1 large egg
– 1/2 cup buttermilk
– 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
– 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
– salt and ground pepper
– 1 medium sweet onion, such as Vidalia, sliced crosswise and broken into rings (discard small center rings)
– 2 tablespoons olive oil
– seasoning salt (I used the A&W seasoning)
Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
In a medium bowl, whisk together egg, buttermilk, flour, and cayenne and season with salt and pepper. Put the panko in another medium bowl.
Dip onion rings in egg mixture (letting excess drip off) and dredge in panko, then 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 16 minutes.
Put the onion rings on a plate lined with paper towel to absorb any excess oil and then season liberally with seasoning salt. Enjoy!
The consensus was that these onion rings were pretty fantastic. Better than A&W, in fact! And I think that is because while these onions rings had a nice, crispy, golden brown coating, they weren’t overly heavy and there wasn’t excess amounts of grease when taking a bite like often happens with deep fried food. Because the onion rings weren’t deep fried, they just tasted so much lighter. The onion rings were the perfect, crispy addition to our lake dinner and I would absolutely make them again for a fun, weekend meal.
After dinner we finally got to enjoy one of our first camp fires of the summer. Early on in the season there was a fire ban and then more recently it seems to have been way too wet to have a fire, but last weekend the conditions were looking good. There were some damp leaves in the fire pit, so the fire took a little coaxing and it was definitely more of a paper fire initially, but that’s ok because it gave me a chance to have some fun burning some old homework assignments and other personal documents. Maybe it’s the pyro in me, but it’s a lot more fun to throw paper into the fire than the trash can or shredder!
Oh! And today is my first blogiversary! It’s actually kind of crazy to think that I have been blogging for a year already. It has definitely been a huge learning experience, a really good creative outlet, but most of all, a lot of fun. It’s almost hard to articulate what this blog means to me and I am sure that sounds silly, but it’s just something I’m really proud of. Neither writing or photography comes naturally to me, but I really wanted a way to share what I am passionate about. I love eating and I love cooking, not just because I love a good meal, but because, for me, food is so strongly tied to memories and people. If you know me well, you know that there isn’t much I love more than cooking for the people who are important to me or sharing an experience at a new restaurant or one of my tried-and-true favourites. And in my experience, food (especially really good food) is one of those common denominators that brings people together and makes them happy.
So, I guess, in a nutshell, that’s what I have been trying to do here. Share my passions and the things that make me happy with others. And thank you to everyone, friends, family and acquaintances, for your support and encouragement. It can also be a little nerve-wracking to put yourself out there, and knowing that people enjoy what I write is always a great feeling. 🙂
Happy Canada Day, Blogiversary (to me) and Monday!