Sweet onion casserole with rice, chipotle and Gruyere

Indeed an excellent way to use the leftover cooked rice.. Very interesting flavours: sweet onion, smoky chile, gentle cheese, somewhat North African spices.. The interesting balance of power: it is to be the onion casserole with rice, not the rice casserole with onion..for 2-3 people, as a light meal, you will use:

  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 large sweet Vidalia onion, peeled and chopped (about 1/2 kg)
  • about 300 ml cooked rice
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • Pinch of cayenne
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 chipotle chile en adobo, diced really carefully – you want to make sure this piping hot smoky flavour is evenly distributed throughout the whole dish
  • 200 ml  sour cream
  • 200 ml shredded Gruyere (about 250g), divided; i did once replaced the gruyere with the Gouda basic edition; the result was not as refined, but quite acceptable to a hungry palette – and infinitely cheaper for the budget..)
  • Salt to taste
  • Chopped cilantro for garnish (optional)
  1. In a large ovenproof skillet, preferably cast iron, on low heat melt the butter.
  2. Add the chopped onion and while occasionally stirring cook for 10 minutes until soft.
  3. Meanwhile, stir together the cooked rice, cumin, allspice, cayenne, garlic, chipotle chile, sour cream and 1/2 of the Gruyere cheese.
  4. Taste and adjust seasonings, then add salt to taste. Do not skip this step – make sure the salt is at a desired level – this id your only chance -otherwise you end up with spicy – but somewhat flat offering.
  5. Preheat the oven to 350F/175C .
  6. Add rice mixture to the skillet and stir until onions are mixed well with the rice.
  7. Top with the rest of the Gruyere cheese and bake for 30 minutes uncovered or until brown and bubbling.
  8. Serve topped with cilantro, if you like.
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