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Stuffed Onions

September 4, 2022 | by Mushka Haskelevich

Rice stuffed onions with harissa, fresh herbs and goat cheese.

Vegetables stuffed with meat, rice, or cheese are like an old Israeli poem to me. They have many beautiful melodies from many cultures with endless variety and flavor.

After spending seven years living in the heart of food culture, the shuk of Jerusalem, I have tasted add different kinds of “memulaim” which means stuffed ones in Hebrew. I have learned the tricks of the trade from my adopted Iraqi grandmother, and this is one of my personal takes on it.

Did you know that the first major mistake humanity made had to do with food? It’s fascinating how much good and bad can come through eating. Get more Jewish food thoughts here.

Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 40 minutes
Total time: 1 hour
Makes 12 stuffed onions


  • 3 medium Spanish onions
  • 2 cups raw basmati rice
  • 1 cup fresh herbs (I used mint, cilantro and basil)
  • 1 tablespoon harissa paste
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon fresh or dried sumac
  • Salt and freshly cracked pepper
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons goat cheese
  • Champagne grapes (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 400℉.
  2. Slice the onions on top and bottom and peel. Make a slit half way through the layers until you just get to the center.
  3. Bring a small pot of water to a boil and boil onions for 8-10 minutes.
  4. Remove to a cold ice bath until cool enough to handle.
  5. Peel off each layer of onion and remove nylony residue.
  6. Mix rice, herbs, harissa, garlic, sumac, salt and pepper in a bowl.
  7. Place a small amount of mixture in the center of each onion layer and roll closed, until all onions are filled.
  8. Line up the stuffed onions in a sautée pan so that they are snug, drizzle olive oil and add grapes if using around the pan. Bake for 30-40 minutes.
  9. Top with goat cheese and enjoy.

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