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A dinner party without onions?

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
On a whim I invited a friend and his girlfriend over for dinner tomorrow night. I quickly thought to make a batch of my bolognese for a simple dinner of pasta, salad, and garlic bread. But I'm told that his girlfriend is sensitive to peppers and onions, not really allergic but they hurt her tummy. Peppers are easy enough to avoid but what to do about onions? How does one avoid onions in a meal altogether? I'm Greek so I don't know how to avoid onions. Menu suggestions please?

"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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post #2 of 12
Does she react that way to onion, per se? Or just to the form it takes? Sometimes it can matter.

For instance, Friend Wife cannot eat whole kernel corn, as it upsets her system. But corn in a puree, or as part of a sauce or soup she handles just fine.

Similarly, a friend of mine has problems with peppers. Turns out it's whole green peppers. Give him roasted reds and he's happy as a clam in mud.

So you might check on that. If it's only onions in the form of pieces, it opens the possibilities much further for you.
They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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post #3 of 12
And the other kinds of onions to consider as well. Green onions, shallots, garlic leeks and so on. Plenty of places with the flavor and different textures.
Palace of the Brine -- "I hear the droning in the shrine of the sea monkeys." Saltair
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Palace of the Brine -- "I hear the droning in the shrine of the sea monkeys." Saltair
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post #4 of 12
what you could do is have a pasta bar with different toppings.
Antipasta or caesar salad with garlic bread or a crusty Italian bread. Pasta, topping with a choice of a few sauces.
Bolognese
Alfredo
Vodka sauce
sundried tomato alfredo
fresh basil pesto
Carbonara

Good luck What time was dinner again????????????? I'll eat her onions....Have fun..Bill
post #5 of 12
tell your friend to find another gf :lol:
post #6 of 12
Thread Starter 
That's funny. Note my signature lol.

"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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post #7 of 12
Use celery instead? Or the white stems of chard/silverbeet/ bok choy. Similar textures which would prob suit a pasta dish. And add some onion powder :) Loads of garlic could help boost the flavour.
 Don't handicap your children by making their lives easy.
Robert A. Heinlein

 
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 Don't handicap your children by making their lives easy.
Robert A. Heinlein

 
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post #8 of 12
Is it Raw onion or cooked oniion most people can handle cooked.:D
CHEFED
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CHEFED
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post #9 of 12
It's hard to cook Italian or Greek without any onions...is she intolerant of garlic as well? You could make a pasta primavera with other veggies and no onions, or a baked mac & cheese. Or forget the pasta and do a stir-fry without onions. Or cook fish. Or, or, or...

Let us know what you decide to do.
post #10 of 12
If you want a pasta sauce there are plenty of ones with garlic and no onions. Usually fish sauces are only garlic. You could make clam, or mussel, or calamari sauce. I do lots of vegetable pastas, cauliflower cooked very very slowly in olive oil and a couple of sliced garlic cloves - better not put the hot pepper in, it's a relative of the bell pepper - covered pan, stir occasionally so it doesn;t stick. Use short pasta (rigatoni, penne) and then lots of parmigiano. It makes a good meal.

Also, depending on the region there will be more onion or more garlic in a sauce, look at southern italian recipes.
"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
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"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
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post #11 of 12
The most common problem with onions is gas, and it's worse when the onions are raw. Nevertheless, if she's sensitive to onions it would display more sensitivity on your part not to inquire too deeply into the private digestive affairs of a stranger since there are so many good alternatives.

Spaghetti without onion isn't a problem. Many white sauces are made without onion or garlic either. There are the many variations of al burro, including the classice Alfredo. Carabonara is a delicious choice, and like Alfredo, is fun to make tableside. If garlic isn't an issue you could make a nice, white clam sauce.

And if you must go red, there's puttanesca -- one of my favorites -- which may be made quite well without onion although it does need garlic (not to mention olives and anchovies). Similarly a very satisfying arrabiata may be made without onions -- if she can handle the garlic and pepper. With both of these there's enough going on that you won't miss the onions much.

There are alternatives to noodles. How about a risotto with a saute of early spring vegetables.

You don't need garlic on the bread either. Olive bread is good, and there are a number of Italian style breads with sesame crusts which will speak to the Greek in you. They don't need anything more than a dip in good olive oil; and they're quite nice dry if served with a dressed salad and pasta.

Unless you're going nuts on the olive oil for the pasta course, go with a true Caesar salad. You just can't beat it for an informal-friends dinner. I posted a great recipe for Caesar on CT quite awhile ago. If you can't find it with a search, I'll repost.

One of the great things about a simple dinner like the one you're planning is the opportunity to enjoy a nice wine. Frascati anyone?

BDL
post #12 of 12
Thread Starter 
A caesar salad sounds perfect. I'm scrapping the whole pasta idea and doing a pizza party instead. I posted pics of my recent pizza activity on the "what's for dinner" thread a couple of weeks ago. This should be a crowd pleaser and there will be a variety of toppings for people to choose from.

Pizza, salad, and wine.... does anything else go with that in terms of appetizers and dessert?

"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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