Monday, January 12, 2009

Pickled Young Onions - hope in a bottle

title
The market has been bursting with these little bulbs since late last month and I couldn’t resist grabbing a few bundles for myself. Never mind that I have never used these young native onions ever, and would most likely have to root (no pun intended) around the internet for something to do with them that wasn’t too lame, I had to have some! I already love onions, and can eat scandalous amounts of them, but tempt me with pearly pink miniatures with sprightly green stems still attached and I am quite powerless.

So, like many market days past, I happily dragged home the unsuspecting items with which I had no idea what to do.

But can you blame me? They were so pretty and really begging me to take them!

And don’t you think they are so emblematic of a new year? Young and vibrant and full of rosy-cheeked promise?

Which is why it doesn’t make sense that I pickled them.


title
Was this my feeble attempt to try any preserve the dewy newness of the year? Or the youth of these onions? Or maybe I just need to admit, despite all my childhood protestations, that YES I do like pickles.

No recipe for now – I just threw everything together by taste with what I had lying about. Some cider vinegar and sugar, some pepper and dill seed, a sili labuyo (bird’s eye chilli) and some random fennel fronds. I boiled the vinegar and sugar, then added the onions (stems trimmed and peeled). I boiled them for about 5-10 minutes then removed the lot from the heat, chucked in the spices, poured it into a jar and left to cool, after which I stored the jar in the fridge – which is where it remains, getting more pickly every day and proving fair match for adobo, curries, and stinky cheeses.

Whatever the case may be, pickled or fresh, I like how these little bulbs look to me like hope and beginnings – and thanks to a little vinegar and sugar I have bottled that symbolic promise of better things to come :)

Hope...not too shabby a theme for 2009 I’d say :)

27 comments:

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

Pickled onions are delicious, especially with Swiss raclette!

Cheers,

Rosa

ThePurpleFoodie said...

Oh yum! I still have your Nigella's dense cupcakes bookmarked! It's about time I make them :D

Erin said...

These would be really great with my kelaguen.
Hope . . . onions of hope are something we all need to keep close right now. Or perhaps just pickled for hopeless emergencies.

Tartelette said...

Pickled onions are delicious...pickled anything rocks!!

Happy New Year to you Joey!
Thes best of love and life for 2009!

Peabody said...

I love that first photo.

ChichaJo said...

Hi Rosa! With raclette oh yes!

Hi Purple Foodie! Hope you like them! :)

Hi Erin! Hmmm...have to check out your kelaguen! Pickled for hopeless emergencies...hehehe, like that!

Hi Helene! When I was younger I didn’t like pickles at all, but then I grew to realize there was a whole world of pickled things out there that I loved! Happy New Year!

Thanks Peabody! :)

Bordeaux said...

Alluring produce and a poetic entry.

Watergirl said...

Hope in an onion, or is it an ogre is like an onion?? Pickling those babies were a great idea, and what better way to use them than as a condiment for the stewy dishes, perfect for these cooler evenings. By the time summer comes along, you can plop them into salads too. Versatile and mouth watering.

Stepford Mum said...

are they shallots? i use those to make roasts with - chopped and rubbed onto chicken and pork and with roast veg!

the pickled ones would be good with raclette, i agree - and in line with the "waste no food" policy, i've been raclette-ing leftover quezo de bola! not as soft and melty but still good, and it would be yummy with your pickled pinky purple onions!

Anonymous said...

Make caramelized onions with them, I particularly like the one of Ina Garten. Yumm! :)

--Dee

Ling said...

Ah this is too weird - I have three jars of maturing pickled onions sitting quietly in a dark corner of my kitchen! :D They've been there since just after Christmas - hope they turn out fine! Those onions of yours are truly pretty, and I'm sure they'll taste mighty fine too!

bee said...

i love the first pic. i like pickled onions, but what i like better is:

chop up a red onion and add enough lemon/lime juice to soak, plus some salt.

just around an hour. they are crunchy and delicious on anything, esp. in sandwiches. .

ChichaJo said...

Hi Bordeaux! They really were alluring...I just had to have some for myself :)

Hi M! This cooler weather is great for cooking...I’m enjoying it along with these onions!

Hi Iyor! Yes they are but unlike the ones I usually see with very dry skin, these looked like they were just pulled out from the ground :) Will try them with my next roast! I had a friend who would microwave quezo de bola until they became like cheese chips!

Hi Dee! That sounds fantastic! Must remember that....

Hi Ling! Oooh! Same wavelength again! Great minds ;)

Hi Bee! I will definitely try that too...sounds great! And I love onion in my sandwiches :)

Anne said...

yummy and inspiring - a good combination to start out 2009.

Belinda said...

Hi Joey! I don't blame you one bit for being irresistibly drawn to these pretty little pink onions, despite not knowing what you were going to do with them! And of course, you came up with a PERFECT way to use them. The pickled onions sound divine...and still look pretty and pink. :-) Great photos too, as always!

veron said...

Such cute pink onions! I do not blame you for wanting to preserve them.

The Yummy Mummy Cooks Gourmet said...

Hi! I found you while looking for osso buco leftover ideas. Great blog. I'll be back for more visiting!

Manggy said...

This is a great alternative to onion confit-- and uses no fossil fuels ;) I have a friend who can't stand the sight of onions. She doesn't know what she's missing, eh? ;)

ChichaJo said...

Hi Anne! Thanks! Happy 2009 to you too!

Hi Belinda! Thank you! Whether I’m shopping for dresses or produce pretty gets me every time :)

Hi Veron! Heehee :) They were irresistible!

Hi Yummy Mummy! Thanks for visiting and for leaving a comment!

Hi Manggy! Really??? C and I go through onions like they were going out of style!

LyB said...

I love pickled onions. They look so cute in that little jar you have there. :)

Jude said...

Still too early for these guys around my neck of the woods. Can't wait!
Nothing wrong with pickling the freshest produce you can find!

ChichaJo said...

Hi Lyb! I collect jars :)

Hi Jude! Hope you get to enjoy these too :)

ceno said...

This is the way we used to deal with onions at my grandparents'. They had a big garden full of veggies and couldn't get rid of all of them, except when we wont on vacation. Anyway, we used to eat those pickles as snack...not really healthy of course but healthier than potatoe chips and alt..

ChichaJo said...

Hi Ceno! I would say definitely much much better than potato chips! :) You are lucky to have had access to a garden full of veggies!

annmariemarie said...

Ohhh onions! I love them all... yellow onions, green onions...especially red onions!

Nice photo, BTW

ChichaJo said...

Thanks Annmariemarie! We love them all too! They are healthy so eat all you want ;)

ravisingh said...

Great post, I have bookmarked it for future use, I will try it out. Thanks