Golden Rings of Glory

I enjoy cooking a variety of foods at home but sometimes there are favorites that seem like they just can’t be made as good at home—but my friend Nina has taken one such crunchy favorite and proven me wrong.

A few weeks ago we were doing our favorite weekend activity, getting together with friends to play cards. We had decided to prepare Panini sandwiches and Nina wanted to share a recipe for Onion Rings that she had found on I know this sounds like a set up but really I did not put her up to this. I was surprise at how crunchy and delish the rings were and they were definitely as good as a local restaurant known for its onion rings. We added a spicy fry sauce and it ended up being a delicious evening. To top it all off we whooped up on the guys at cards too, just doesn’t get better than that!  Here are the recipes for the Southwestern Panini and Crunchy Onion Rings



  • 1 medium ripe California Avocado, peeled
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 8 slices oat bread
  • 1/2 pound thinly sliced deli ham
  • 4 slices Swiss cheese
  • 2 tablespoons butter


  • In a small bowl, mash the avocado with sugar, garlic salt and lemon
  • juice. Spread over four slices of bread; layer with ham and cheese.
  • Top with remaining bread.
  • Spread butter over both sides of sandwiches. Cook on an indoor grill
  • for 2-3 minutes or until bread is browned and cheese is melted.
  • Yield: 4 servings.



  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 teaspoon seasoned salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 large onion, very thinly sliced
  • Oil for deep-fat frying


  • In a shallow bowl, whisk the first five ingredients. Separate onion
  • slices into rings. Dip rings into batter. In a deep-fat fryer, heat
  • 1 in. of oil to 375°. Fry onion rings in batches for 1 to 1-1/2
  • minutes on each side or until golden brown. Drain on paper towels.
  • Serve immediately.    Yield: 12 servings.

A little garlic and cayenne powder was added for a little extra kick!

Here are our luscious rings.


For dipping we made the Spicy Buffalo Ranch dip; often times we change this up by adding 2 Tablespoons of Chipotle Salsa instead of the hot pepper sauce for something a little different.


• 2 cups (16 ounces) sour cream

• 1/2 cup hot pepper sauce

• 1 envelope fiesta ranch dip mix

• Honey mustard



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