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We're celebrating Meatless Mondays with balanced, delicious meal plans. We hope you'll join us -- whether you're vegetarian all the time or just here and there.
Today: Onions and kale need some time to mellow out -- and, on a Monday night, so do you.
The idea of throwing dinner together in a matter of minutes is endlessly appealing. You zip home from work, whip the ingredients out of the fridge, and then -- after a quick crack, sizzle, splat -- dinner is served in under 10 minutes.
But wouldn't it be nice to spend less time running around the kitchen and more time relaxing as the smell of buttery onions fills the room? We think so, too.
Tonight, give yourself, your onions, and your kale some time to mellow out. Because this menu asks you to caramelize a pan of onions and bake them into a pudding, it might be a little longer than usual before you're ready to eat. Make yourself a snack, get off your feet, and embrace the wait. By the time dinner is ready, the onions will be sweet and caramelized, the bitter greens will be rich and relaxed, and you'll be feeling great, too. Move over Manic Monday -- this is Mellow Monday now.
2 large yellow onions
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
1 cup heavy cream
1 bunch curly kale
1 bunch mustard greens
1 tablespoon brown rice vinegar (substitute apple cider or white wine vinegar with 1/4 teaspoon sugar)
1 tart apple
1/4 cup chopped hazelnuts
1/4 cup shaved Pecorino Romano or Parmesan
Cheese and crackers for snacking
We bet you have olive oil, unsalted butter, eggs, flour, salt, and pepper in your pantry. If not, add those to your list.
1. Put on your onion goggles and slice the onions into semicircles. Heat 2 tablespoons each of oil and butter in a large skillet, add the onions and the thyme, and cook over medium-low heat.
2. Make yourself a drink, turn on the television, or crack open a book. Eat some cheese and crackers and chill out while your onions get nice and brown. Preheat the oven to 350° F.
3. Beat 3 large eggs, then add 1 tablespoon of flour, 1/2 teaspoon of kosher salt, and 1/4 teaspoon of ground pepper and mix well. Pour in the cream.
4. Grease a medium-sized casserole or gratin dish. Then add the onions and cover with the pudding mixture. Bake for 40 minutes.
5. Tear the kale and mustard leaves into small pieces. Add to a large bowl with the thinly sliced scallions, the rice vinegar, 2 tablespoons of olive oil, salt, and freshly ground pepper. Mix with your hands to coat the greens in the dressing.
6. Core the apple and cut it into super-thin slices (whip out the mandoline if you’ve got one). Fold the apples in with the greens. Toast the chopped hazelnuts on the stovetop. Go back to your book or your TV show while the pudding bakes.
7. When the pudding is ready, take it out of the oven and spread the salad on a platter. Sprinkle with hazelnuts and cheese shavings. You’re ready to eat.
Photos by James Ransom and Sarah Shatz