Monday, 10 November 2008
Making pickled onions
These are one of the easiest of pickles to make, very popular to eat, and make great presents. If you grow your own, shallots make the best pickled onions, but this time of year you can buy pickling onions and shallots by the pound/kilo from teh greengrocer or market. Peeling isn't the pleasantest job, granted, but i try to do as many as I can all at once, to lessen the pain LOL. This jar in the picture is the very last of the shallots form the garden, and we'll have them on Boxing Day. Brining helps to keep the onions crisp.
Have ready a big bowl or container of brine, using 1 oz salt to 1 pint of cold water.Only use sound onions, top and tail them, then peel them, place directly into the brine. Cover, and leave for 24 hours. Meanwhile, get jars ready; ones with plastic lids are ideal, as sometimes the vinegar can react with metal on the lids. Having said that, I have used Kilner jars successfully in the past. After 24 hours, drain the onions and rinse well. Pack them into jars and pour over vinegar to cover. I use plain, cold vinegar, as that's our favourite here. For spiced vinegar, you can buy ready spiced, which can go in cold, or you can make your own by heating up vinegar to a simmer with spices added. Simmer for about 10 minutes, then remove the spices, leave to cool, then pour over onions. For presents, you can add other bits to teh jar themselves, eg strips of red pepper, bay leaves, peppercorns (pink green and white look pretty), garlic, chillies, etc. Be warned, though, the vinegar and pickling time and action can intensify the heat and spiciness! Seal and label, and leave for 6 weeks before use.
Posted by MrsL at 08:21