With recipe ideas bouncing around into my brain on a pretty much constant basis (and demanding to be tested immediately, of course), I find that I rarely have time to try anyone else’s recipes these days. Our fridge is covered with stickies on which I’ve scribbled various meal ideas and flavor combinations (legible only to me). But on those days when the culinary inspiration doesn’t flow so easily – or I’m simply bored with my own cooking style – I am so grateful to have a carefully curated selection of great cookbooks on hand.
So I was elated when Kate Winslow and Guy Ambrosino offered to send me a copy of their recently released, allium-focused cookbook, Onions Etcetera. I am a self-professed alliumphile; it’s a rare dish that emerges from my kitchen without a good dose of onions, garlic, leeks, scallions, chives, shallots, and their pungent brethren. As soon as the cookbook arrived I stopped in my tracks, plopped myself down on the sofa and pored over its pages for an hour straight, drooling and dog-earing recipes along the way.
Kate and Guy are enormously talented, and their cookbook is filled with gorgeous photos and a nice balance of recipes in which alliums are the star of the show, along with dishes where they play more of a supporting role. I love that the recipes are divided into allium-themed sections that roughly correspond to the seasons, so in winter I can easily flip to the sections on yellow and white storage onions, sweet onions, and shallots and leeks, and come spring (I am counting the days… seasonal allergies be damned) I can get right to the recipes featuring green garlic, spring onions, ramps, scallions, and chives.
All of the recipes are creative and inspiring, and also super accessible for the home cook — pretty much the cookbook trifecta, wouldn’t you say? So far I have made the roasted sweet potatoes with Scallion Miso Butter and also the French Onion Soup with Gruyere Toasts (so good!). Also on my list are the Farro and Vegetable Salad with Charred Onion Dressing, Winter Caprese, Green Gazpacho with Almonds, Grilled Delicata Squash with Shallot Agrodolce, and many more.
But let’s get back to that swoon-worthy scallion miso butter. Have you tried miso butter yet? If not, you need to get on this ASAP! The savory, umami-rich miso paste and sweet, creamy butter combine in a magical synergy, and in this version the addition of finely chopped scallions provides the perfect amount of onion-y bite to balance the richness and take this combination over the top.
There is no better topping for a tender, sweet-earthy, roasted sweet potato; and for that matter, this miso butter would be great melted over corn on the cob, green beans, grains or lentils, stirred into a pot of mashed potatoes, or simply slathered on a slice of good, crusty bread and topped with a soft-cooked egg. Once you’ve tried this stuff there is simply no.going.back. So get ready 🙂
And, I am so excited to be giving away a copy of Onions Etcetera! To enter for a chance to win, leave a comment here or on my corresponding Instagram post (posted today, March 16th) by Sunday, March 19th at 11:59 PM. The winner will be randomly selected and announced on Monday, March 20th. Good luck and happy cooking!
Sweet potatoes with Scallion Miso Butter
Miso butter recipe reprinted with permission from Onions Etcetera, by Kate Winslow and Guy Ambrosino
For the miso butter (makes about 1/2 cup)
6 tablespoons softened unsalted butter
1 tablespoon sweet white miso paste
4 scallions, finely chopped
Mash together butter, miso and scallions until combined. Place mixture in a ramekin or roll into a log and wrap with waxed paper. Keeps for about 1 week in the fridge.
For the roasted sweet potatoes:
Serves 4 to 6
4 medium sized sweet potatoes (I used a variety of types/colors, including regular orange sweet potatoes, red-skinned white Japanese sweet potatoes, and purple Stokes sweet potatoes), scrubbed
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon fine-grained Celtic sea salt or kosher salt
Preheat oven to 400F. Line a rimmed sheet pan with parchment.
Prick each sweet potato a few times with a sharp knife. Rub the potatoes with olive oil and sprinkle all over with salt. Bake until tender, 45 minutes to 1 hour, turning the potatoes and rotating the pan halfway through.
Slice potatoes in half lengthwise and smear each with a spoonful of softened miso butter.