from Appetite for Reduction by Isa Chandra Moskowitz
Serves 4 • Active time: 30 minutes • total time: 50 minutes
When my boyfriend requested low-fat onion rings, I kind of let out a sigh; maybe I even rolled my eyes. I’m not crazy about onion rings in the first place and so of course I would be even less crazy about low-fat ones. right? Well, sometimes it feels good to be wrong! I ended up gaga over these. Somehow the greasy mess that is a diner onion ring became a thing of beauty when coated in some whole wheat bread crumbs and baked in a superhot oven.
2 vidalia onions (about a pound), or other sweet onion such as Walla Walla
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 cup cold almond milk
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
1 cup whole wheat bread crumbs
1 teaspoon kosher salt
2 teaspoons olive oil
Slice the onions into 3/4-inch-thick rings. Separate the rings and place in a bowl. Cover with a kitchen towel or something, to keep the onioniness out of your eyes.
Preheat the oven to 450°F. Line a rimmed 12 by 18-inch baking sheet with parchment paper, spray with cooking spray, and set aside.
Now you’ll need two bowls for the batter and breading. If you’ve got large, wide cereal bowls, those’ll do the trick. Into one bowl, dump the flour and cornstarch. Add about half of the almond milk and stir vigorously with a fork to dissolve. Add the rest of the almond milk and the apple cider vinegar, and stir to incorporate. Set aside.
In the other bowl, mix together the bread crumbs and salt. Drizzle in the oil and use your fingertips to mix it up well.
Get a conveyor belt going. From left to right, arrange the onions, the flour mixture, the bread-crumb mixture, and lastly the baking sheet. Dip each onion slice into the flour, letting the excess drip off. Transfer to the bread-crumbs bowl and use the other hand to sprinkle a handful of bread crumbs over the onion, to coat completely. This may take a bit of practice.
Carefully transfer each onion to a single layer on the baking sheet. Make sure you use one hand for the wet batter and the other for the dry batter, or you’ll end up with club hand.
Spray the rings lightly with nonstick cooking spray and bake for 8 minutes. Flip, and bake for another 6 minutes. The rings should be varying shades of brown and crisp. Taste one to check for doneness. Serve as soon as possible. With ketchup if you must.
You have to use sweet onions for this. Otherwise the taste won’t be as special and the texture won’t be as juicy. Also, if things go as planned, you’re not going to use all of the onions or all of the coating. Just use the nice big rings, and use the tiny inside rings for something else. For the batter and coating, you need a lot to get everything breaded, but there will be a bunch left over. Them’s the breaks.
Per serving (1/4 recipe):
calories from fat: 45
Total fat: 5 g
saturated fat: 1 g
Trans fat: 0 g
Total carb: 38 g
Fiber: 3 g
sugars: 5 g
Protein: 7 g
cholesterol: 0 mg
sodium: 520 mg
vitamin A: 0%
vitamin C: 10%