Lokdolmar

Swedish stuffed onions, Lokdolmar (lukh-dohl-mar) may be prepared a day before they are needed and kept, covered, in the refrigerator. Lokdolmar may be served hot with boiled potatoes or cold as part of a Smorgasbord (Swedish cold table).

3 large onions, peeled

½ teaspoons salt

2 oz. butter

1 small onion, chopped

3 tablespoons dry breadcrumbs

8 oz. minced beef

2 tablespoons single cream

1 egg yolk

1 teaspoon chopped fresh parsley

1 teaspoon dried dill

1 tablespoons fresh breadcrumbs

With a sharp knife, make a cut in the onions from the outside inwards to the centre.

Put the onions in a large saucepan and cover them with water. Add

1 teaspoon of the salt. Put the pan over high heat. When the water comes to the boil, cover the pan, reduce the heat to low and simmer the onions for

25 minutes, or until they are tender. With a slotted spoon, transfer the onions to a colander and leave them to drain and cool.

In a small frying-pan, melt 1 ounce of the butter over moderate heat. When the foam subsides, add the chopped onion and cook for 5 to 7 minutes or until it is soft and translucent but not brown. Transfer the contents of the pan to a medium- sized bowl and add the dry breadcrumbs, beef, cream, the remaining salt, egg yolk, parsley and dill. Using a wooden spoon or your hands, mix all the ingredients until they are well blended.

Preheat the oven to fairly hot 375°F (Gas Mark 5, 190°C).

When the onions are cool enough to handle, slip off each layer. Discard the centre layers which are too small to use. Holding an onion layer in the palm of one hand, place a generous teaspoon of the meat mixture in the centre of it and roll it up. Continue filling the onion layers until all the meat mixture is used up.

With half the remaining butter, grease an 8- x 12-inch ovenproof dish. Pack the onion rolls tightly together in the dish, and dot the top with the remaining butter.

Place the dish in the oven and bake the onion rolls for 20 minutes, basting occasionally with the butter. Remove the dish from the oven and sprinkle the top with the breadcrumbs. Return the dish to the oven and bake for a further 15 minutes or until the top is golden brown. Remove the dish from the oven and serve immediately.

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