Dragons' pickled onions

From: Don Dillon dondd@hpmwetg.sr.hp.com

Date: Tue, 24 Aug 93 9:33:29 PDT

I'm forwarding this from another food mailing list (Foodlore) and the
original author is Alison Popowicz popowicz@SAPPEY.GRENOBLE.HP.COM.  

Dragons' pickled onions


malt vinegar
an inch or two of peeled and crushed root ginger
dried chilis
coriander seeds
mustard seeds
a few cloves  (and/or any other whole spices that take your fancy)

small onions or shallots


Put the vinegar and spices into a saucepan. Bring to the boil and simmer
for five minutes - no longer, otherwise the vinegar will evaporate. Take the
saucepan off the heat and leave it, covered, to cool down.  (I leave it

Peel the onions and place them in a colander, sprinkling each layer
generously with salt.  Leave them overnight - stand the colander in the
sink so that the water and salt can drain away.

Strain the vinegar to remove the spices.

Pack the drained onions into clean jars and pour in enough of the spiced
vinegar to cover them. You can put one or two of the chilis in the jar with
the onions if you like them VERY fiery!  Seal and label the jars of onions.

Put any remaining vinegar into a sealed bottle and keep it for making chutney
or for the next batch of onions!

Store the jars of onions in a cool dark place and DO NOT EAT UNTIL CHRISTMAS!
(Or for at least four weeks.)

I haven't given any quantities for the ingredients, because it depends on
how fiery/spicy you like your pickles and how big your batch of onions is.
As a guide, for two litres of vinegar I'd use about two inches of ginger,
thirty or so peppercorns, two tablespoons of coriander seeds, six or seven
cloves, five or six small nuclear-power chilis, two tablespoons of mustard
seeds... you can also pickle onions without the spices, but you must still
boil the vinegar otherwise the pickle will go off.

You can use hot vinegar to pickle onions, but this makes the onions go
soft.  I prefer them pickled cold and crisp!


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