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Tuesday, March 04, 2008

No onions for you!

Either he has to slice them himself, or be content with dried onion flakes... because I don't do onions. If I'm even in the room when onions are being sliced, my eyes tear up, film over, and I can't see right for several hours.

I found these tips (some of which I'd never heard before) over at AT:The Kitchen:
1. Use a sharp knife. A sharp knife will cause less damage to cell walls, and fewer irritants will be released.

2. Keep the exposed cuts away from you. As soon as you cut an onion in half, turn both halves down on your cutting board. Leave the side you aren't currently chopping unpeeled. Once you've finished with one half, move the diced onion into a prep bowl, and set it on the opposite side of the kitchen, before proceeding with the rest of the onion.

3. Cut the onion properly. Chefs have an efficient way of dicing onions which conveniently keeps the most of the exposed cuts against the board. This Chow video
will walk you through the process.

4. Chill the onions. With a cold onion, less propanethial S-oxide will evaporate. You'll still get some irritants, but this will help. Remember – refrigerate, don't freeze. Frozen raw onions are often mushy when they thaw.

5. Run the vent hood. Position your cutting board next to the stove and turn on the exhaust fan. Irritants will be pulled away from you and your eyes.
Hmmm... I don't know about those. Maybe these tips will help someone else out there. Or maybe I'll just have to get myself some of these sexy goggles for onion slicing.

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