As a ‘real foodie’, I have this idea that I should therefore like all real foods. I have a confession to make; I don’t like raw onions. Cooked onions are wonderful. In the winter, I go through kilos of onions in soups and stir fries. Caramelized onions, yummm. But raw? Nope. Only if they’ve been marinated for a very long time.
My oldest daughter, on the other hand, loves raw onions. She will voluntarily ask for raw onions on buttered (sourdough) bread, a very Slovak thing to eat. I gladly prepare it for her, because onions are healthy and all that. “Yumm, Mom, this is SO good! Have a bite.” Er…no thanks dear, I’ll let you enjoy it.
But then I came across the idea of Lactofermented Red Onions over at Delicious Obsessions and thought I’d try it.
It’s actually quite good. The onions become slightly sweet but are still crunchy and loose whatever it is I don’t like about raw onions. When I open the jar, however, they still smell exactly like freshly cut onions, so every time I go to use some I cringe.
Basically I thinly sliced onions (bawling my eyes out), poured a bit of 2% brine over and massaged it for a bit till the onion softened, then packed it in a jar and poured over 2% salt water, making sure all the onion was below the liquid, and put on the lid. I let mine sit for about two weeks before I was satisfied with the taste and put it in the fridge.
They would be perfect in salads, spreads, on buttered bread. Just another way to get those lactofermented food benefits in everything!
UPDATE: I made these without brine and it’s even easier. Weigh your onions (this is so so much easier in metric). Thinly slice. Weigh salt (with no flow additives added) equalling to 2% of the weight of the onions. So, for example, say you have 500g of onion, you would use 10g of salt (approx 2 teaspoons of finely ground salt). Sprinkle salt on onions, let is sit a bit if you want (draws out moisture), and then knead it with your hands until it releases juice. Stuff into a jar, pressing down on the onions so that they are covered by the brine. Let sit two or more weeks.
If you want more precise instructions for making salt water to pour over the onions, head on over to Delicious Obsessions.
This is part of my Probiotics and Fermenting series, which you can find more of here.