Almost every day I make/bring my husband lunch. This is excessive, I know. But, if I don’t do it he will end up either not eating, or, even worse, going to Costco for “mystery food”. There just aren’t options near his work that are fast and delicious AND healthy. So, I bring it to him, or make it early in the morning for him while he is primping. I usually use the excuse that he needs to eat to see him in the middle of the day… I miss him if I don’t (barf).
So, today, I needed to think of something to bring. My favorite days are the ones where there are leftovers and all I have to do is heat it up. It’s a little frustrating to get up, to the dishes, make more at lunch time, do them, and make more at dinner…especially when you don’t have a dishwasher. I mean, I AM THE DISHWASHER. Alas, this was not a leftovers day, which challenges me to make something using the least amount of dishes possible.
CARAMELIZED ONIONS WITH FIG BALSAMIC ON TOAST WITH MELTED MUENSTER
Ingredients: One red onion; one yellow onion; thyme; rosemary; olive oil; salt; bread; muenster; fig balsamic; 3 cloves of garlic; honey; brown sugar
I began by chopping my onions. You may do it however you like, diced, thick, whatever, to each his own…but I halved the onion and sliced them up that way into relatively thin slices.
I used a relatively large Sauce pan in order to give everything room. Coat the bottom of your pan with olive oil and drop in chopped onions. Toss in the olive oil on low heat and let them begin to caramelize. After a couple stirs and roughly 5 minutes, go out to your handy-dandy garden and pick your Thyme and Rosemary.
If you don’t have a handy-dandy garden, and don’t live in Santa Cruz, California where it’s 70 degrees and sunny, go to the store and buy your herbage.
Once you have acquired said herbs, give them a fine chop and toss in with your caramelizing onions. At the same time, add a large spoonful of honey and a little spoonful of brown sugar. This will not only help temper the Fig Balsamic we will put in later, but will help to get a good caramel flavor on and from the onions.
Mix herbs in with honey and onions and let sit, still on low heat, for about a minute, allowing the honey to melt completely and the brown sugar to break down completely.
Chop your garlic. If you are a big garlic person, you can add more. I wanted the garlic to be an “accent flavor” (kind of like an accessory), and not the dominating flavor, so I didn’t add a ton. But you can!
Add your garlic and stir your delicious concoction.
Add your Fig Balsamic. If you can’t find it, don’t worry. If you have fig jam or something similar, you can add a spoonful of that, along with a bit of Balsamic Vinaigrette. It wont taste exactly the same as this, but it’ll still be delicious! Also, you can leave the fig part of it out completely… just add Balsamic Vinaigrette! ANYWAY, add your fig stuff, and stir.
This will need to stay on low heat, and be stirred until it reduces a bit. When you put in your balsamic, make sure you put in enough to allow it to reduce and create an almost jam-like consistency. Everything should be REDUCED REDUCED REDUCED. Keep things cookin’ for an additional 5-10 minutes and turn off your heat.
Make some toast. I used the “Artisan” bread from Trader Joe’s but whatever your favorite bread is will work just fine. Toast it and get our your Sliced Muenster!
Take your Compote that you just made, put some on the toast, a slice of Muenster over it, and place it under the broiler for about 1.5 minutes. Keep an eye on it! (I always burn stuff in the broiler if I don’t). Wait until the cheese is nice and melty and golden brown on top and then take it out and eat it!
I believe that this compote (or whatever you want to call it), would be delicious on something like Pork Chops or Chicken as well as under yummy cheese on toast.
Good eating on a sunny Thursday afternoon.