Test 1: Whole wheat rolls with sweet onions and spinach.
I have been thinking about making something like this for awhile, and tonight I finally had the opportunity. It’s relatively simple and subtle, but let’s face it: that’s my kind of food. Honestly, it turned out okay, but it was definitely missing something. I’m sure there could be countless variations, but this is where I started.
2 tbsp. of olive oil
1 large sweet onion, sliced into thin rings
1 large shallot, also sliced
2 medium cloves of garlic, smashed
Coarsely cracked black pepper
3 ozs. of baby spinach, washed and drained
4 hearty whole wheat rolls
Soft Swiss cheese
Heat the oil over low/medium heat in a large skillet, and add the crushed garlic. When the garlic becomes fragrant, add the onion rings and the shallot. Season with a pinch of salt and cracked pepper and allow to wilt and caramelize.
While the onions are cooking, preheat the oven and begin to bake the rolls. I chose a roll from the local grocer that was very dense and was made with cracked wheat and flax seeds. (Though eventually I’d like to make my own). A nice thick rustic loaf of bred could also work here, though whatever you choose should have some density and body. Cook the rolls until they start to develop a nice crust, remove and allow to rest as everything else finishes cooking.
When the onions have begun to color, add the spinach and toss. The leftover water on the leaves will help to cook the spinach and reduce it. In about five minutes, when the spinach has fully reduced and finished cooking, remove the garlic (eat it if you like!) and split the onion and spinach mixture between the rolls. Top with a substantial slice of soft Swiss cheese, squish down, and enjoy!
So this was very good, but I do think next time I will change some things.
First, the sweet onions taste delicious, but I think I will add a couple of dried bay leaves to them as they soften in order to deepen the flavor.
I also think that before adding the Swiss cheese and serving, the sandwich could use a pinch of coarse rock salt. The salt would hopefully counter the sweetness of the onions and the tanginess of the cheese, and I think the crunch of the rock salt would give it a better mouthfeel.
Up the cracked pepper to half of a teaspoon while cooking the onions, and maybe explore with something like chard or kale if you prefer a touch of bitterness.
But all that will be for the next time! I also think that a variation with pepperoncino and sweet basil might be nice — what do you think?
With food and love from the table,