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The Obedient Onion

By Alana Sugar, March 9, 2011  |  Meet the Blogger  |  More Posts by Alana Sugar
There are some foods in this world you either love or hate. And then there are some foods that fall into both categories. Take onions, for example. Not too long ago I had a conversation with someone about eating healthier. When I suggested sautéing onions with garlic and adding some leafy greens, they turned up their nose and said, “No way! I hate onions, unless it’s onion rings or bloomin’ with honey mustard; then I love ‘em!” While onions sometimes get a bad rap — being blamed for everything from crying to bad breath to refrigerator odors — I, for one, would not want to live in an onion-free world. Whether grilled, baked, sautéed or raw, these obedient vegetables will turn a good dish into a great dish! Not only do they complement just about any salad, soup, stew, salsa or savory dish, they are plenty versatile and are packed with flavonoids (a type of polyphenol and antioxidant) that may provide important health benefits. Remember, antioxidants are found abundantly in fruits and veggies; they help support the cells of our body by slowing down the oxidation of LDL cholesterol and preventing free radicals. Like most vegetables, onions are low in calories, fat free, cholesterol free and low in sodium. When you shop for fresh onions, you’re bound to find a few varieties. That’s because onions are classified as either spring/summer or fall/winter. They are considered either “green” or “dry.” Green onions, such as scallions, are harvested while the shoots are young, tender and green. Dry onions can be red (or purple), white or yellow; they are harvested once their shoots have died and they’ve formed their paper-like skin. Even a shallot is a dry onion of the fall/winter variety. The spring/summer varieties of dry onions, such as Vidalia, Maui or Walla Walla, are sweeter and they don’t keep as long as other dry varieties. Fresh onions aren’t your only option. You’ll find dehydrated, powdered, granulated and mixed-dried blends that all can add depth of flavor to many dishes. Here are some favorite ways to use onions: What’s your take on onions? Love ‘em, hate ‘em? Mixed feelings? Got a favorite recipe? Let me know!
Category: Food & Recipes, Produce




Central Restaurant Products says ...
Love love love em'! Like you, I couldn't (and wouldn't want to) live in a world without onions. I add them in some way to just about everything I eat (within reason of course). My favorite way to use them is to sautee them with margerine and garlic and then cook asparagus with them. Delicious, easy, inexpensive and mostly healthy.
03/09/2011 7:51:00 AM CST
Evan says ...
Great recipe round-up. I love the flavor of caramelized onions. I like to toss them on a pizza flatbread with some salty cheese and rosemary as an appetizer.
03/09/2011 8:04:02 AM CST
Molly says ...
Oh wow, so many great-looking recipes. Right now I have green onions, red onions, sweet onions and shallots on hand. I can't wait to get home and start cooking!
03/09/2011 8:55:14 AM CST
SusieBeeOnMaui (Eat Little, Eat Big) says ...
Goodness. Onions are a part of almost all we eat. Couldn't imagine fajitas without them: http://eatlittleeatbig.blogspot.com/2010/09/friday-night-fajitas.html and they feature prominently in my Caesar Veggie Wraps: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gvvm_vuB6bc
03/09/2011 12:58:01 PM CST
Paloma says ...
Follow this healthy, delicious and original mexican fish recipe. Cut a whole organic onion in to thin slices, cut 3-4 green tomatillos (the small ones that come in a husk) sauté in a pan with olive oil or butter. Add any type of your favorite (white meat) fresh fish fillets. Add some crushed pepper and sea salt, cover, finish with some fresh cilantro leaves (or grind a bunch on a blender for a fancy finish). And ready, serve with brown/white rice and all the juices on top. Simple, quick and easy, You, your family and guest would love it! It is my nanny's recipe. Too healthy and too good..
03/09/2011 8:17:17 PM CST
Al says ...
Enjoyed your post very much. I'm an onion lover myself. Now it's time to get the kids to appreciate all that goodness!
03/10/2011 9:59:35 AM CST
TB says ...
I love onions and I make it a point to use them in any and all food dishes that I prepare. I like my onions sauteed with green peppers and garlic or red peppers on sandwiches. Either way I love onions!
03/13/2011 1:56:45 PM CDT
Jeanne Regan says ...
I am so pro-onion, that I'm practically feverish! I couldn't live without them. Well, maybe that's overstating it just a bit, but my life would be, on the whole, less satisfying without them!
03/18/2011 5:04:22 PM CDT