Down on the Allotment

What's happening down on the allotment? An intimate account of a passionate veggie grower.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Matron's Pickled Onions

I came by a large sack of pickling onions in a farmers shop recently. I have always adored pickled onions, as a child I remember a big 2 gallon stone jar with a cork stopper in the corner of the kitchen. There was no limit to the amount of pickled onions I could eat, there still isn't!
Anyway, here's how I do it; Pour boiling water over the onions and leave to soften the skins for about 2 minutes, then rinse with cold water a couple of times and drain. The skins will come off easily then! Put in a bowl and salt them for 24hours.
Rinse off the salt quickly under a running tap then drain and dry with a cloth. I pack them into jars and then I can measure how much vinegar it will take to fill the jars. Then tip the measured vinegar into a saucepan 2 parts vinegar 1 part water, pickling spice and a couple of ounces of sugar. You won't taste the sugar but it takes the nasty acid taste from the liquid.
Gently pour the boiling vinegar over the onions, small bits at a time so you don't crack the glass. I do it through a sieve to take out most of the pickling spice but I leave a spoonful in the jar anyway. I decorate and flavour with a bay leaf and a couple of dried chillis. Should be ready in a few months.
Next subject. Brilliant success with courgettes grown under a black plastic mulch, but the ground is a little drier than usual. I try to keep up with the watering, but the inevitable powdery mildew has taken a hold a bit earlier than usual this year. There is not much you can do about it. Some people say you can hold it back a bit spraying with a water/milk mix. It is unsightly and a nuisance. I expect you all have it!
Salford Black Beans are swelling up nicely. As I am saving seed this year, the plant stops producing young beans when you leave some to go to seed. If I had kept picking the young beans then they would keep producing (plant hormones) I hope to have some seeds to continue next year.
More pictures of Leo enjoying himself at hydrotherapy last week!
My exceptionally clever Niece took these pictures with her new super dooper Canon EOS 18million pixel camera. I was never that clever! (but she can't make pickled onions like I can!)

5 Comments:

At 9:36 PM, Blogger Gingerbreadshouse7 said...

That''s right Matron, we all have something of a knack for doing something :o)..just need us to share the info..Iike those pickled onions , although I've never tasted them , those look pretty tasty ;o)

 
At 10:20 AM, Blogger Sue@G.L. Allotments said...

Martyn goes outside to make our piccalilli as the fumes from boiling vinegar make us gasp!

 
At 11:31 AM, Blogger Keats The Sunshine Girl said...

What dish would pickled onion be a good accompaniment? Wish I could swim like Leo, even dog paddle but I can't! Am not a water baby!

 
At 5:54 PM, Blogger Matron said...

Keats the Sunshine Girl - most often I eat them straight out of the jar, but otherwise with fish and chips, or with a salad, especially a ploughmans salad with cheddar cheese.

 
At 11:17 PM, Blogger BilboWaggins said...

Gorgeous pictures of Leo in action. Leaping in after that ball you'd never believe he was an old chap.

 

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