Can anyone tell me what the actual heck is up with onions?
As I understand it, they are in absolutely everything. Sauces, salsas, gravies, curries, salads…all this, despite being the reincarnation of culinary evil in small, unassuming, gently-wrapped bulb-like form.
In my defence, I’ve managed to get over their presence in Bolognese sauce, having learnt as a small child that trying to pick them out from a plateful of mince merely earned you an earache off your mother and sauce in your hair (and it STILL had onions in. The BASTARDS).
Admittedly, they’re OK if cooked down beyond all hope in any sort of chilli, curry or pasta sauce – witness the World’s Best Carbonara copyright my boyfriend, or a proper Indian curry where the colour of the onions is crucial ‒ because then, I admit, they can add a certain layer of flavour in the background (although I personally don’t put them in my tomato sauces for pasta or homemade pizza and we’ve all managed FANTASTICALLY FINE without them as yet).
BUT in any other respect, basically, if you can still taste them, bite them, or otherwise distinguish them in any tangible way from the rest of the sauce, you’re fucked.
I sit at my desk now, a good few hours after my lunchtime pulled pork, salsa and guacamole salad (yes, otherwise, yum), and I CAN STILL TASTE THE ONION. The onion whose flavour I stupidly believed would be subsumed in the rest of the pulled-pork-avocado-tomato-olive-oily-goodness. (I can also SMELL it, despite my basically empty salad box sitting a good few feet away from me.) O onion, how thee doth scorn me.
Not for me the pleasing reminder of tender pork and creamy guacamole to take me into my mid-afternoon al desko snack. Nope; instead, I reek of acidity, my tongue still recoiling at the harsh, pungent and, to be frank, WANTONLY CALLOUS IMPOSITION of the raw onion that had nestled so cowardly among the proper food, skulking like a cat who knows it’s kicked your favourite mug off the sideboard.
I mean – they’re all edge, no flavour. All kick, no caress. They promise untold wonders under their intriguingly layered coats, but are all padding, no product. They are the ALL TALK AND NO TROUSERS of the plant of the food world. And they stink.
As I grow more pronounced in age – well, nearly 26 ‒ I can just about contemplate the idea of an onion having a brief and fleeting dalliance with a tomato in a salad, as long as they go their separate ways at the earliest convenience. Basically, I can fish a sliced tomato from an olive-oil-onion dressing, but anyone thinking I’ll go the whole hog and eat the wretched raw rounds themselves along with the tomato-y deliciousness has got to be having a laugh.
The only possible advantage to onions, as far as I can tell, is that anything eaten afterwards can get away with being exceeding rich ‒ chocolate, basically ‒ in order to properly counteract the outrageous pugnacity of still-lingering flavour from the small, chopped, offensive little oniony git-bits.
Onions, beware. I’ve reached my culinary limit. If I find you in any salad, sauce or gravy, in any kind of identifiable form from now until forever, I’m coming for you. I rarely listen to my mother these days and I’ve got way, way better at keeping food out my hair compared to when I was five.
In short: YOUR DAYS, MY LAYERED FOES, ARE NUMBERED.