Say yes to cipolle alla parmigiana, aka Italy’s onion rings

Possibly when you hear the phrase parmigiana or parmesan, your brain quickly goes to the tomato sauce-laden, sometimes cheesy casserole of eggplant or hen parm. I’ve always loved the Italian way of making different components “alla parmigiana,” napping eggplant or zucchini with a gentle tomato sauce or bechamel (that’s suitable, not all parms are crimson), perhaps a little bit of mozzarella (fresh or brick) and a copious sprinkle of parmigiano reggiano. They are always in my rotation. 

On my most modern journey to Italy, I was launched to cipolle alla parmigiana, or onion parm, by my good friend Elizabeth Minchilli at L’Alchimista, a restaurant in Montefalco in the Umbria area of Italy. It is even far better than it appears. The dish seems to be centered in Umbria as a way of honoring the neighborhood Cannara selection of purple onion. The onions are fried as you would make onion rings, then layered with sauce and parmesan. So visualize the sweet taste of the onion with its yielding texture, layered with sauce and cheese. I ate gluttonously. 


Cipolle alla parmigiana (onion parmesan) honors the area Cannara variety of red onion at L’Alchimista in Montefalco, Italy. Image by Evan Kleiman. 

Now, I’m dwelling and the idea of frying onions in the summer heat isn’t so desirable. But specified that I’m in Los Angeles, household of numerous delightful onion rings, I determined to cheat and obtain the rings to make the parm. Your obstacle is to not try to eat all the rings in the auto on the way household. 

I questioned you via Instagram what your favourite rings are in town and received surprisingly reliable responses. You can use possibly gritty breadcrumb, or cornmeal-dipped rings, or ones that are battered. I choose the battered or simply floured, but they are really hard to come across. Which indicates sooner or later I’ll have to fry my have rings, or slices. 

If you’re frying the onions at house, you could pick out to slice them vertically, dredge and fry as an alternative of cutting crosswise into rings, but either way, the dish will be luxuriously messy and mouth watering. And truth be informed, you can roast the onions as a substitute of frying them. Just be sure you salt them and drizzle plenty of oil above so they’ll become comfortable and not dry. Potentially top with a layer of parchment.

Here’s my tomato sauce recipe for summertime consuming. Make the dish with bechamel sauce in the cooler months. Individuals, you really do not need a recipe. You know what to do. Procure your rings or fry or bake them by yourself. You need ample to make a pair levels. Make or buy tomato or bechamel sauce. Buy parmigiano reggiano and grate it, or acquire it grated. Make layers in this buy: sauce, onions, parmesan, sauce, onions, parmesan, sauce, parmesan. Bake in a pre-heated 375 degree oven right until heated via and the cheese melts.

Top rated listener-advised onion rings


Onion rings at Cassell’s in Koreatown were title-checked by several KCRW listeners. Photo by Evan Kleiman.

Cassell’s
Koreatown

Jar
Beverly-Grove

Swingers
Beverly-Grove

Musso and Frank’s
Hollywood

Clark Street Diner
Franklin

Twohey’s 
South Pasadena

George’s Burger

Boyle Heights

Bravo Burger
Inland Empire

Pie and Burger
Very long Beach front

Hodad’s
San Diego

The Habit
(many destinations) 

The Hat
(multiple places)