Friday, July 18, 2008

What's In My Frig?

Occasionally you might see me blog a recipe that calls for just half a sweet onion. I’m the Single Guy, so that means my recipes don’t call for a lot of any one ingredient.

With half an onion bulb in my frig, I often end up having to make another dish that might require onions. Let’s say, a risotto perhaps. Or maybe the base for a tomato sauce, maybe? But this week, after using half a red onion for a small pot of chili, I decided to turn the remaining half into pickled onions.

I made this the first time when I was competing in last year’s Turkey Cook-Off at the San Francisco Chronicle. It was pretty easy, and a nice complement to any rich-tasting food. (In the Chronicle competition, the pickled onions topped off a plate of green beans cooked into bacon fat.) This time I did it from memory and you know I don’t have a good memory so I’m sure I missed a few steps. It still turned out fine.

The trick is having a mandolin so you can thinly slice the onion. Then I just placed the slices in a jar with 2/3 cup red wine vinegar, 2 tablespoon of sugar, a pinch of kosher salt and a ¼ cup of water. (You have to use red wine vinegar to give it that nice pink color, or else it’ll just look sad.) Then I just let it marinade in the refrigerator, and now I use it as a garnish for other dishes or for my pulled pork sandwiches. It’s also very pretty to look at when I open my frig.

3 comments:

bakingforthecure said...

I never know what to do with my leftover onions, this sound like a good idea. I use only white onions, is this recipe suitable also for them?

Chef Ben said...

Oh sure, white onions like Vidalia sweet onions are perfect to pickle. Again, the red wine vinegar is what gives it the pink color, not the fact that I used red onions. That's just what I had in my frig.

foodhoe said...

I love pickled onions, they are good on lots of stuff, I like them in sandwiches and btw I'm starving!