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Some Important Tips about Onions

Also Known as
Kanda, Pyaaz

Onion powder

Onion powder is made from dehydrated onions. Dice and dehydrate an onion, grind it, and store it in an airtight glass container. It can be used in any recipe that requires fresh onion and is excellent when added as a dry rub or in a marinade. Onion powder is a terrific complement to many foods: Include a dash in gravies and sauces or add to breads: it is a tasty addition to butter. Sprinkle over salads or Stir into soups and chowders.

How to Select 
Choose onions with tightly closed necks that are absolutely dry, avoiding those with a thick, woody center in the neck. The skin should be bright and shiny. If you notice dark, powdery patches under the skin, pass it up as this is an indication of a common mold which will eventually spoil the flesh.

Avoid those that are sprouting or have signs of mold. In addition, onions of inferior quality often have soft spots, moisture at their neck, and dark patches, which may all be indications of decay. Onions are available in fresh, frozen, canned, pickled, and dehydrated forms.

Culinary Uses 
· A kitchen is incomplete without the distinctively pungent smell and taste of onions filling out the flavors of almost every type of cuisine imaginable.
· If cutting onions irritates your eyes, there are a few tricks that you can employ. Chill the onions for an hour or so before cutting or soak in water after peeling the skin. Use a very sharp knife and always cut the onions while standing; that way your eyes will be as far away as possible. If cutting onions really makes you cry, consider wearing glasses or goggles. 
· Combine chopped onions, tomatoes, avocado and jalapeno for an all-in-one spicy salsa dip. They are also a wonderful addition to soups and adds fiery taste when seasoned.

· Coated with gram flour and fried, the Onion Bhajiya makes an excellent snack.

· Sautéed chopped onions are so versatile that they can be added to most any vegetable dish.

· Enjoy classic Italian salad-sliced onions, tomatoes and mozzarella cheese drizzled with olive oil.

· Onions can be used, usually chopped or sliced, in almost every type of food, including cooked foods and fresh salads, and as a spicy garnish; they are rarely eaten on their own but usually act as accompaniment to the main course.
· Onions pickled in vinegar are eaten as a snack.
· Onions are a staple food in India, and are therefore fundamental to Indian cooking. They are commonly used as a base for curries, or made into a paste and eaten as a main course or as a side dish.

How to Store 
Onions should be stored in a cool, dark, dry location and spread out for optimum air circulation. To do this, either place them in a wire hanging basket or a perforated bowl with a raised base so that air can circulate underneath. All onions should be stored away from potatoes, as they will absorb their moisture and ethylene gas, causing them to spoil more readily.
Cut, raw onion leftovers should be tightly wrapped tightly in plastic bag or sealed in a container and refrigerated to be used within a few days.

Health Benefits 
· Onions are a very good source of vitamin C, chromium and dietary fiber. They are also a good source of

manganese, molybdenum, vitamin B6, and folate, potassium, phosphorous and copper.

· If tears come to your eyes whenever you slice an onion, you’ll be glad to know that your tears are not shed in vain. The very compounds that give onions their pungency, taste and smell have been identified as substances that may fight cancer.

· Onion is said to possess expectorant properties. It has been used as a food remedy for centuries in cold, cough, bronchitis and influenza. Equal amount of onion juice and honey is beneficial.

· Onions are very much valuable for people having high cholesterol levels or suffering from heart disorders.

 

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