THE ONION! In all it’s various forms, it has to be one of the most used and appreciated items in my larder. The brown onion, white onion, red onion, shallot, spring onion, salad onion, leek…all have various attributes and uses, and don’t even get me started on their cousin, garlic (that’s one for another post).
As well as inducing tears when you cut into the onion, they have an interesting texture. They add a refreshing crunch when added raw to salads and become much silkier and smoother when cooked. And to me there is no better smell than the smell of frying onions!
I adore vegetables, and this love doesn’t get much bigger than I how much I’m into onions! One of my cousins hates most vegetables, especially onions. Her sister often finds herself blending cooked onions into her pasta sauces as she can’t do without the flavour, but has to remove the evidence!
Forming the starting point of most things I cook, the onion makes a great base, it’s aromatic flavours add so much depth to any dish. They can be quite sharp and pungent when raw, but when cooked become much sweeter and more flavoursome. Onions should be celebrated more for their unique properties, they are so versatile! As well as adding background flavours to a dish, they can be fiery and powerful on their own.
As a homage to the onion, here are a some recipes which celebrate the onion as the star of a dish, and not just a compliment to another key ingredient.
Cranberry Roasted Shallots, with Capers
Caramelised Onion and Roquefort tartlets
French onion soup
Red onions, sliced and roasted.
Drizzled in olive oil and sprinkled with Maldon salt.