moro top ten: grilled onion salad with yoghurt

“we are very fond of this salad – velvety, sweet and smoky, it is quite a combination”

another recipe from moro east, and a dish that i served alongside the roast chicken we had with fried spiced cauliflower. i wasn’t really sure what to expect from this – it’s described as a salad and i didn’t know whether it would be a substantial side dish or not. it turned out to be more of an accompanying sauce to everything else – a moorish take on bread sauce  perhaps, in the context of the meal i cooked.

so, how did i get on?

it’s an easy dish providing you’re happy to get a bit dirty. i cooked my onions on the hob, having opened the doors and windows to avoid too much smokiness in the kitchen. i did this while prepping other food and found it easy enough to keep an eye on the onions, turning them occasionally, while they charred. the only tricky bit was when the green stems of the onions became almost slimy as they softened, so turning them wasn’t always easy (i really should order some asbestos fingers!).

the final verdict:

would i have tried this recipe if it hadn't been part of the moro top ten? no – being unsure what to expect would have put me off.

would i try this recipe again in the future? yes – the resulting dish is delicious and it’s a nice accompaniment. i’d try grilling or even roasting the onions, over charring them on the hob, simply to reduce the mess that is generated.

moro’s grilled onion salad with yoghurt (serves 4)

1kg new season’s onions, with tops on, red onions or spring onions, roots trimmed

200g greek yoghurt, thinned to the texture of cream with 50-100ml water

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

¼ garlic clove, crushed with a pinch of salt

1 ½ teaspoons thyme leaves, lightly crushed

1-2 teaspoons zaatar

place the whole onions over a barbecue or directly on the naked flame of a gas hob or under the grill, until the skin is charred and crisp all over and the flesh is very soft. this could take anything from 15-30 minutes depending on the size of the onions.

meanwhile. season the yoghurt with the olive oil, garlic and thyme. adding salt and pepper to taste.

when the onions are cool enough to handle, peel off any burnt skin, place the onions in a bowl then pour the yoghurt over the top and mix well. taste for seasoning and sprinkle with the zaatar.