Sunday, April 28, 2024

One Onion, Two Onions, Three Onions, Four

I use a lot of onions in my cooking and meal preparation so plant a big bunch of them each year.  (No, it's still a wee bit quite a bit early to put them in for this season, but it's coming.)
I plant both red (Red Comred) and yellow (Stuttgarter Reisen) onions and normally use about the same amount of each variety.  A total of three 4' x 8' raised beds are devoted to growing them every year.  I plant them fairly close to each other, about 8" apart in each direction, which works for me.
Keeping our onions over the winter months hasn't been much of a problem as our basement that stays close to a constant 52° seems to be a place where they're happy.
Curiously, last year the red ones developed much larger than the yellow ones so I knew there should be more of them left this spring.  I've been noticing some of both varieties were starting to go . . . sprouting big green shoots or developing mushy/rotten spots . . . so it was high time to sort through all the remaining ones.

Brought them up from the basement and spread them on a table on the deck.  Gosh, I had more than I thought in those two crates.

I went through all of them, checking carefully and these are the ones I relegated to the compost heap.  That leaves me with maybe 5-8 pounds of yellow onions and a heap of reds.  Guess I should lean more heavily on the red ones now.  Wonder what French Onion Soup made with red onions will look like? 


Rosalea said...

Love your red onions. I cannot get them to keep very long, so gave up growing them for a few years. This year, I have winter sown some red onion seeds, and they are poking up. Just ran out of my stored onions, so dug up a few sprouting multipliers. The amount of onion I use would have stripped the multiplier patch bare, so last shopping trip, bought some cookers. Just got my new sets in the mail, and think they can go in very soon.

Leigh said...

I love that you can grow onions so well. The globe type onions are so much more convenient to work with than the little multiplier types I manage.

Have you thought about dehydrating some of your extras? Maybe making your own onion soup mix? Or maybe you'll use every last one! Onions are a staple, always!

Mama Pea said...

Rosalea - You're braver than I am in getting your onions in early! I've never tried sowing onion seeds over winter but it would be interesting to try some year. This past winter would have been the perfect one to try because of our relatively mild temps. Darn. Missed that chance. :o(

Leigh - Hubby suggested I do as you suggested . . . dehydrate some of what I have left. I decided not to because although a few are definitely going soft on me, I know I will use what I have left before this season's crop is ready and I have several half gallon jars of dried onions in the pantry from a couple of years ago. :o)

Pioneer Woman at Heart said...

Wow, that's great. We cannot store onions here, so I don't plant them anymore. However, if I do, or find a good price on them at markets, I dehydrate some for minced onion, onion powder, and one year I canned carmalized onions. I also freeze onion soup. As for the red, I have never dehydrated any nor canned/froze anything. I do love the red ones for salads.

Mama Pea said...

Pioneer Woman at Heart - Yes, I use the red onions, probably mostly, for tossed salads. But also use them in potato salad, macaroni salad, egg salad, things like that. Any color helps make food appealing to my mind. :o)

Tim B. Inman said...

Second attempt: (Google fried me out a day ago....)

I wouldn't care what color the onions are. French Onion Soup is always high on my list. We used to keep some canned up in pints to pour over a roast when we put it into the oven. HMMMMM. I should maybe do that again.


Mama Pea said...

Tim - You just gave me an idea. I think I'll do your trick of pouring some French Onion Soup over the meat when I make Swiss Steak. That would make a good, light gravy right in the pan. You would have to pressure can the pints of the soup, right?

Goatldi said...

Onions are a delight!

I have an issue with space. I have one half of the new raised bed in garlic. So until the harvest of the garlic that leaves not much for starting more veggies.
Two of the older raised beds are in second year asparagus. I will not be defeated for a nice third year crop for next year.

I guess I got the jackpot. Moved in August of 2019 to a new to me gardening area . Add to that a dash of climate change, a dash of chem trails and just the old fashioned adjustment of new rules. If nothing else I can plan on planning the unexpected!

Mama Pea said...

Goatldi - Even gardening after many years in the same spot, there are always challenges (klinkers!) thrown at us. I worry that all the newbies jumping on the bandwagon of growing their own food will be discouraged because it truly is hard to get started and then successful, isn't it? Your asparagus will be wonderful next year, and then for many, many more years to come. Hang in there!

Tim B. Inman said...

Yes, pressure can the soup. I think USDA says 60 minutes. I always go by the book! Having onion soup on the shelf was always our staple. I've lost that habit. So now maybe we'll both have to give it a new swing. I'm hungry already. (And another yes. It makes a wonderful gravy.)

Mama Pea said...

Tim - It's on the list for when I get out the canner this summer. (Not that I couldn't do it BEFORE the rush of the summer garden. But that might be too sensible. ;o) )