Do you know your onions?

By easyFood

16 March 2018

Shallots are very mild and sweet. They can be used in almost any recipe and are particularly popular in French cooking. They are a good choice for when you don’t want an overpowering onion flavour, and are also perfect for raw dishes since they are crisp but not pungent.

Banana shallots
The banana shallot is a cross between a regular shallot and a yellow onion. They have the larger size of the onion and the mildness and sweetness of the shallot, and are known as banana shallots because of their elongated shape. They are easy to peel and cook slightly more quickly than regular onions. You can substitute two banana shallots for one onion, or one banana shallot for two regular shallots.

Yellow or brown onions
These popular, all-purpose onions are the best for all-round cooking purposes and are incredibly versatile. Many cooks contend that yellow onions are the best for caramelising, and they are called for in many classical French recipes.

White onions
Popular in Latin American cooking, white onions are a little sweeter than the yellow variety but can be substituted for them in any recipe. Because of their crisp texture and mild flavour, white onions are great raw slivered in salads, thinly sliced into your favourite sandwich or scattered over a pizza.

Red onions
Though they can be pungent, red onions are great for eating raw, bringing crunchiness and brightness to a variety of dishes. Red onions work very well when pickled. We also love them in salads, on pizza and as a burger topping. Slow-cooked, they can make a fantastic chutney to accompany cheese.


Spring onions
Also known as scallions or green onions, these are commonly found in Asian cuisine. Spring onions are mild and need little to no cooking time, which makes them a great, crunchy garnish. Slice them on the diagonal so they look extra pretty.