Saturday, November 17, 2007

Weekend Herb Blogging #109

Vanessa from What Geeks Eat is the host of this edition of Weekend Herb Blogging and this week I'll be using another new ingredient for me, found at the Florence Market, Cipolline Borettane

Cipolline Borettane

Cipolline Borettane are these small, flattish white onions and they are sold peeled and ready to be used, just like these. They can be traced back to the 15th century where they were being grown in Boretto in the province of Emilia-Romagna and in 1969 they were officially renamed Borettane.

The Borettane are a sweet type of onion with a mild flavour and traditionally you'll find them preserved in balsamic vinegar.

I thought I'd be a little different and while still using Balsamic Vinegar I've made something that is more your "eat now" rather than eat later type of food.

My idea is to combine the Cipolline with a fine dice of this fabulous Prosciutto,


gently sauté them until they are both browned and then splash in some extra old Balsamic Vinegar to help deglaze the pan and caramelise the juices to create a sticky sauce. The end result is a perfect side dish for any occasion.

In this dish I used a 30 year old Balsamic Vinegar which shouldn't be confused with the Traditional Balsamic Vinegars - more information of the differences can be found on this post.

A good substitute would be one of the higher end, three or four leaf rated Balsamic that can be found at Supermarkets or good food stores.


Cipolline Borettane con Prosciutto and Aceto Balsamico/Borettane Onions with Prosciutto and Balsamic Vinegar

Cipolline Borettane
prosciutto, cut into small cubes
20 year old Balsamic Vinegar

Heat a little oil in a pan and when warmed add the diced prosciutto. Cook over a medium heat, stirring well until browned. Add the Cipolline Borettane and stir them through the prosciutto, continue to cook over a medium heat until the onions start to brown and soften. If you think they are browning too quickly just add a little water and turn down the heat.

When the onions have cooked through, keeping the pan on the heat, drizzle in a little Balsamic and stir vigorously, scrapping up any pan residue. The Balsamic will evaporate a little and join with the pan juices to create a sticky sauce.

Place into a bowl, scraping out all the sauce and serve at once.


Sweet, tangy with a spicy bite - these explode with flavour. I can guarantee you'll come back for more.

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  1. I agree, what could be more perfect than this. The photos are just gorgeous too. I see these little flat onions in my market sometimes, but haven't tried them. They're pretty expensive here, but I bet they are worth the money in a dish like this.

  2. That sounds fantastic! Prosciutto and Balsamic add such a depth of flavor to everything...and just to each other!
    What a treat to get the onions peeled - I hate peeling tiny onions (Yeah, I know, blanch them and all that but I still hate it)!

  3. mmmmm.... looks delicious, and I do love onions, balsamic vinegar and prosciutto. Must try that one!

  4. WOW - these look incredible. When i was in Palm desert last month my friend made a recipe thaqt combined chipolline onions with chesnuts and brandy. They were amazing.

    I have copied this recipe for future use.


  5. Fabulous pictures, great pictures. My husband just asked why I kept going mmmm, mmmm. I showed him your pictures and he understood. Thanks!

  6. Thanks Kalyn - I think they have just started growing them in the US, unfortunately I don't anyone does in Australia, if they do, I've never seen them

    Thanks Katie - hard to go wrong with those combination of flavours and I agree, they are so easy to use this way, saves on the tears!

    Thanks Kiriel - I do hope you give it a go!

    Thanks Jerry - now that sounds like a wonderful combination!

    Thank you Laurie!

  7. I will defiantely have to make this real soon! I love the combination. Although chipolline are about 3.99 a lb. here, they are worth every penny!!

  8. THANK YOU. I'm stoked to see somebody posting about onions. It's the one vegetable I really don't think I could live without!

  9. Yum! I love cipolline onions even if they are a major pain to skin! That prosciutto is so very beautiful - I'd like a nice plate right now!

  10. Thanks PIC, hopefully as more people eat them, more growers will grow them and bring the price down but they are certainly would trying at least once.

    Thanks Kevin - I'd hate to imagine a world without onions.

    Thanks Sabra - I'm glad I didn't have to skin these!

  11. Yum! Those onions look a treat! Pity the person who had to peel all those onions for the market though :)

  12. Thanks Y - I hope they didn't cry too much peeling them!


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