THIS RECIPE comes from Lesbos, where it is also called sogania, from the Turkish word sogan (onion). Many cooks halve the onions crosswise and, after blanching them for a few minutes, take out most of the inner part, creating little cups that they fill with the stuffing. After numerous tries, I decided to separate the onion layers and roll them around the stuffing. The result is a nicer-looking dish, which also tastes better because the stuffing takes on more flavor and stays moist.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cut a lengthwise slit on each onion all the way to the center and add to the pot. Add
With a very sharp knife, trim off the top and bottom of each onion and peel off and discard the skin and the second layer if it is tough. Gently push out the center of each onion, leaving about four outer layers, and chop the centers. Carefully separate the remaining onion layers and place them on paper towels to drain. (The onion layers can be covered with plastic wrap and refrigerated with the chopped-onion centers in a separate container for up to 2 days.)
In a large skillet, heat the oil and sauté the chopped-onion centers over medium heat for 3 minutes, until soft. Add the garlic and sauté for 2 minutes more. Add the pork or beef and sauté, stirring, until no longer pink, about 3 minutes. Stir in the dill, bulgur, wine, tomato-paste mixture and pepper or pepper flakes and remove from the heat. Stir in the cheese, pine nuts and salt to taste and let the filling cool slightly. Taste and adjust the seasonings, then stir in the eggs.
In a medium skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat and sauté the tomatoes with the bay leaf and oregano for 5 minutes, until the sauce starts to thicken. Remove from the heat, add the wine and pour the sauce over the stuffed onions. Add enough stock to come two-thirds of the way up the onions and sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste.
Place the onions in the oven. Reduce the
Let stand, covered, at room temperature for at least 1 hour, or until cool, to let the flavors develop.
Baste the onions again with the sauce and reheat in a
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