Sunday, September 27, 2009

SMS: Caramelized Onion, Sage, and Cheddar (Gruyere) Muffins (Loaves)


The Sweet Melissa Sundays group made its first savory recipe this week: Carmelized Onion, Sage and Cheddar Muffins. I think caramelized onions are the one of the most delicious foods not containing any dairy or flour, so using them in bread sounded like a splendid idea - adding them to anything is generally a good idea. I had initially thought I would make the muffins for breakfast since I don’t always like sweet things in the morning, but on the SMS Problems & Questions section, a lot of people were talking about serving them with soup, so I decided to make the muffins (or as it turned out, bread) and soup for lunch today. When I got this idea I hadn’t counted on it being close to ninety degrees today, but I had a plan and went with it.



I made a half recipe of the muffins, which generously filled two mini loaf pans. The recipe was laden with quite a few rich dairy products: butter, cheese, heavy cream, and whole milk. When making quick breads, I generally find if fairly easy to cut back some of the fat without sacrificing flavor or texture, so I went ahead and subbed nonfat yogurt for three fifths of the butter and used half & half instead of heavy cream. I had actually purchased white cheddar for this recipe, but when I looked into the refrigerator I saw some gruyere that probably didn’t have too many good days left, so subbed that for the cheddar. I thought the gruyere was excellent with the caramelized onions, and that the bread was very flavorful with a nice fluffy texture. The soup I paired it with was Smoky Shrimp-and-Chorizo from the October issue of Food & Wine magazine, and it was also fantastic.



The bread gets a 7.5 for Deliciousness and a 3 for Effort, giving it an EDR of 2.5. Many thanks to Hanaa of Hanaa’s Kitchen for selecting our first savory recipe. You can find the recipe HERE on Hanaa’s site, and take the time to look around: Hanaa takes on some very impressive kitchen projects such as a making a wedding cake and entering multiple items in her state fair, she also always has a useful culinary tips with her posts. Check out the SMS blogroll to see what the other bakers thought of the muffins, too. And the recipe for the soup, which we thought deserved a rating of 8.5 and enjoyed even on a hot day, can be found HERE on the Food & Wine website.

13 comments:

Nina said...

The loaves seem so clever and beautiful!

Tracey said...

Love that you turned them into loaves - they are beautiful! I'm a huge fan of caramelized onions too so I was more than happy to find out they were part of this recipe :)

Thanks so much for sharing the soup idea! That sounds like it might be a hit in our house so I'm going to check out the recipe and see if I have what I need to make it this week.

Leslie said...

This sounds like a perfect combination of flavors, and I bet it was fantastic for dipping in the soup. It was SO hot today (and no doubt hotter up where you are) that I'm impressed that you made soup! I turned on my oven, not once but twice. Now the house is 82 degrees and I'm trying to cool it off before bed.

I'm glad you were successful with the caramel!

spike. said...

love the loaves- perfect for soup! which is what I'm having for lunch today!

Mrs. G said...

Love the idea of loaves and that soup looks great!

Shandy said...

I love your mini loves and Gruyere sounds delicious in the muffins. 90 degree weather and making soup...you do press on, no matter what the conditions...and the soup really does sound like a perfect pairing with the muffins.

Melissa said...

Oooh, I love gruyere! I want to try that! I was thinking of having them for breakfast, too.

Megan said...

Everything looks so good I don't know where to start!

Caramelized onions are fantastic in just about everything - and pairing the muffins with soup really was a great idea.

Fit Chick said...

Ohhhh, gruyere.....yummy! I love your mini loaves.

Nancy/n.o.e said...

Good call on the muffins/bread. Gruyere just makes everything better. Sorry about the heat, luckily it doesn't translate through the camera.

The Bahens said...

I love the little loaves; I'll keep that in mind for next time!

Basically, Baby Boots said...

Your loaves look really good, especially with the gruyere cheese, but my eyes are drawn to the Smoky Shrimp-and-Chorizo soup. I would have eaten that on a day that was 110 degrees.

Dr Dave said...

I'm with Baby Boots - the loaves sound so tasty, but paired with the soup you had me going nuts when I saw that pic!

It's never too hot for a good, tasty soup!!