pickled red onions

pickled onions finished

i am a fan of quick. and i’m not talkin’ highly processed or convenience foods. now, i’m not knocking busy folks who need to buy a pre-chopped onion every now and again, but for me chopping the onion is a process that takes me from an over-stimulating day to a place of zen. i’m a strange one that way. so what we’re talking about here is a quick pickles. canned, or water-bath processed pickles are a wonderful thing, but sometimes you lose quality and crunch factor with this method. plus you have to wait days to weeks for the pickles to be ready. if you have never done this, it is virtually impossible to slave over a hot canner, then wait up to two weeks to taste the results.

pickled onions raw

if you are a fan of grilled, smoked, caramelized, braised, broiled or roasted meats or vegetables like we are, you need to make some pickled onions. they are the perfect balance to the char or caramelization that occurs with any of the above cooking methods. i could also see this as the perfect companion to anything warmly-spiced (think cumin or cinnamon scented savory dishes, like the pork carnitas below), or anytime you want to add a brightness to a dish. this is such a simple way to punch up so many foods, i think i’ll keep  a jar of it in my fridge all summer long.

pickled onions on carnitas taco

pickled red onions (makes about 2 cups)

adapted from david lebovitz and simply recipes

1 large red onion, sliced thinly

1 cup white wine vinegar

3-4 tbsp granulated sugar, or to taste

2 bay leaves

1/2 cinnamon stick

5 whole allspice berries

5 whole cloves

5-10 whole black peppercorns

pinch of salt

in a small saucepan, heat vinegar, sugar, and spices to simmering. add sliced onions and simmer gently for 30 seconds. remove from heat, transfer to a bowl and allow to cool to room temperature. place onions and pickling liquid in a glass jar. will keep and taste freshest in the fridge for up to a month.

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4 Comments

Filed under appetizer, condiment

4 responses to “pickled red onions

  1. Maybe I’ll make some and take it to David Daniel’s picnic next week. Alan Walling is coming up for a Giants game and quick visit and DD usually throws himself a bday party…and his sweetie is whisking him away during his bday week so I thinking this his party. He has promised whiffle baseball in the backyard…love

  2. Such a quick and great way to serve onions. The mix of tang and kick of the onion must make any food they top even better!

    Love the photos of your food too. Thanks for sharing!

    Seneca Foods

  3. Looks great! The perfect relish to have on picnic table all summer.

  4. andresrcastello

    those onions look delicious, you can tell how the pickling enhances the color.

    While i was reading this i instantly thought ‘pulled pork!’ and then I see the carnitas. great minds think alike ; )

    -Andrés

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