Recipe: Jason Wilson’s Ginger-Panko Island Onions

Jason Wilson (the talented cook behind such wonderful recipes as the imaginative “Nogales Freeze-Out” and the “Badasssss Caramelized Onion Fajitas” — both available in the Recipes section of our site) caught Fat Cat fever (not to be confused with “Cat Scratch Fever”) while vacationing on the Gulf coast of Florida. To ease his sudden Fat Cat craving, he created this delicious, addictive side dish, which works well both as a pairing for grilled fish, burgers and the like as well as a satisfying beverage accompaniment (like, if you’re relaxing on a beach with a cool beer in hand and suddenly want to nosh on something crispy and delicious). What we like best is that it takes our fiery Caribbean Curry sauce down a somewhat Middle Eastern path, creating a unique, spicy, exotic spin on the classic onion ring.

Here’s what he did:


2 large sweet onions (like vidalia or walla walla), peeled and sliced into 1/4-inch rings
2 cups canola oil (or enough to cover onion rings completely in a frying pan)

Dipping Mixture:

2 eggs
1/4 cup buttermilk
1/4 cup Fat Cat Caribbean Curry

Crispy Coating Mixture:

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon fresh black pepper
1/2 teaspoon powdered ginger
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 cup panko breadcrumbs

Dipping Sauce:

1/4 cup Unflavored Greek Yogurt
1/4 cup Fat Cat Caribbean Curry
1/4 teaspoon cumin
Handful of chopped fresh mint


Heat canola oil in a pan to 350 F.

In small bowl, whisk together buttermilk, eggs and Fat Cat Caribbean Curry sauce. Soak sliced onions in mixture for 15 minutes or up to an hour.

In another bowl, mix together the ingredients for the Crispy Coating Mixture and then place into a shallow dish (which makes it easier for coating of the rings later — trust us).

Place the panko breadcrumbs into another shallow dish beside the first.

Remove the onion rings from buttermilk mixture and place on a plate. Save the buttermilk mixture and set near to the other bowls.

Dip and coat the onion rings in the flour mixture, coating them well, then dip them back into the buttermilk mixture, then coat them generously in the panko, creating a thick breading.

Fry briefly in hot oil (turning once) until onion rings are lightly brown on both sides and crispy.

Place paper towels on a large baking sheet to drain the excess oil from onion rings.

When ready to serve, reheat the onion rings on a parchment-lined baking sheet at 400 F for 8-10 minutes, or until golden brown.

Meanwhile, combine the ingredients for the Dipping Sauce, put in a side dish, serve the rings and dip away….