Baked bacon and spinach-stuffed blooming onions

4 servings Prep: 15 mins, Cooking: 50 mins
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Makes for a wonderful side dish to braai meats.

By Food24 September 14 2015
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Ingredients (11)

4 onions — large
6 streaky bacon — strips, finely chopped
500 ml spinach — shredded
10 ml garlic — cloves, finely chopped
45 ml mascarpone cheese — or cream cheese
15 ml butter — soft
1.25 ml salt
freshly ground black pepper — pinch
125 ml cheddar cheese — finely grated
feta cheese — crumbled, to serve
micro greens — to serve
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Preheat the oven to 220°C.

Bring a pot of water to the boil. Cut off the pointy bits of each onion and peel them. Keep the base in tact. Boil for 10 minutes. Rinse under cold water and dry them with a clean dishtowel.

Carefully cut the top into quarters but stop just before you get to the base. Cut it into quarters again. Place each onion on a piece of foil that is big enough to cover it completely.

For the filling heat a pan over medium heat until hot. Add the oil and chopped bacon. Fry for 5 minutes. Add in the spinach and garlic and fry for another 2-3 minutes.  Add the mixture to a food processor together with the mascarpone or cream cheese, butter, salt and pepper. Blend until fine. Stir in the cheddar cheese.

Stuff as much of the filling into the onions and make sure you get it in between the layers. Pile any remaining filling on top and close each onion up with the foil. Make sure it is completely covered or add a second layer of foil if you prefer.

Bake for 30 minutes until tender. Top with crumbled feta and micro herbs, if you prefer.

Treat the baked onions like you would do baked potatoes. After cooking, if you want to make them even more decadent, you can top them off with sour cream, chopped herbs and spring onions.

You could also cook the foil-wrapped onions over warm coals. Just makes sure you give them a double wrapping of foil and ensure that you turn them frequently.

Recipe reprinted with permission of Illanique van Aswegen.

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