“Tomorrow is fresh, with no mistakes in it.” says Miss Stacey from Anne of Green Gables. I always feel that way at the beginning of a new year. The New Year is fresh, stretching out before us with hopes, dreams, and goals- just waiting for us to dive in.
We all have New Year’s rituals. For some it may be writing resolutions, staying up until midnight to watch the New York City ball drop, or having a champagne toast New Year’s morning. For me- it involves cleaning like a madwoman. For years now, I have spent the final days of the year cleaning out, organizing, and decluttering. It’s been my way of making room for whatever might come to me in the new year. I firmly believe you have to make space for the things you want in your life. And for me, New Year’s cleaning is an act of creating space for new opportunities, new relationships, and new outlooks (not to mention, I really do enjoy a clean house!)
There will be some changes coming to The Adventuresome Kitchen this year; changes that I’m very excited about. For starters- this month I’ve created a specific challenge around the GF baking that intimidates me the most.
January’s challenge? Le Macaron!
I’ve had pretty good beginner’s luck with Macarons, but always shy away from them when it comes to baking. Why? Basically, I’m a big chicken. No Longer! 2013 is the year of facing down fears in the name of Adventuresome Cooking!
I invite you to join me in this month’s challenge. Let this be a forum for ideas and help to your fellow GF bakers. At the end of this month, I will post about the experience. Send me your photos and input, and I’ll post those too!
There will be other changes as well- more restaurant and product reviews, an update to Gluten-Free Paris (!), and a few other surprises you’ll just have to wait for.
In the meantime- if you’re looking for something quick and elegant to bring to a New Year’s dinner or bowl-watching party- look no further. This red onion confit is the perfect blend of sweet and savory, and a lovely addition to a baked brie. Instead of spending twelve dollars or more on snobby jelly, why not spend a dollar or two at the most for a red onion, a little sugar and red wine, a few figs and some fresh rosemary?
Happy New Year fellow GF Foodies! I wish you all the best in this fresh, unblemished New Year. May your wildest dreams- in the kitchen and beyond- come true in 2013!
Red Onion Confit
1 med-large red onion, diced
1 cup diced figs (I like the mission or turkish ones)
1 cup red wine
1/2 cup white sugar
2 tbs salted butter (unsalted is okay, but add a dash of salt)
2 tsp fresh, finely chopped rosemary + a sprig for garnish
a few twists of fresh cracked pepper
Melt the butter in a medium saute pan over medium heat. Remember to always heat the pan first, then add the fat when the pan is hot. Add the onions and stir occasionally.
In a separate bowl, combine figs, sugar, and wine. A word about red wine– I believe you should use wine you would actually drink- i.e. a decent bottle. Others say two-buck chuck is fine since you’re boiling it. While the subtleties of a nicer bottle may be erased with the heat, the overall character of the wine will remain. If you start with vinegar, you will end with vinegar. Otherwise, why cook with red wine at all, and just use cheap vinegar?
When the onions are soft- in about 10 minutes- add the bowl of figs/sugar/wine. Stir until the liquid has reduced by half, and has thickened- about 10 more minutes.
To serve: Place several spoonfuls over a warmed brie wheel and garnish with chopped rosemary, a few twists of the pepper mill and a fresh rosemary sprig. OR: Place in a decorative bowl and garnish with the herbs/pepper.
Once cooled, you may place in a jar or tupperware. It will keep in the fridge for up to a week- if it lasts that long. We polished ours off in two days!