The Onion Family

Onions are an everyday basic in any kitchen.  Shallots, scallions and leeks also have their place.  While the family includes almost 500 species, including wild, just a few are easily found.  Bon Appetit, one of our favorite magazines, reviewed 8 members of the onion family.  Here are a few suggested uses:  

white onions - an especially sharp variety that's best chopped or sliced raw into salads, stews and pico de gallo

red onions - usually used raw or pickled for a pop of flavor and color.  But, when you slow-roast them, they taste like candy

shallots - super versatile! Chop into marinades; slice thin and shallow-fry for salads; or roast whole with skins for an easy side

scallions - slice on a bias to finish noodles with something fresh, or toss into slaw.  They're also great charred whole on the grill.

leeks - delicate flavors come out when slowly cooked.  Remove thick green leaves and slice white and pale-green parts into a gratin.

green garlic - available in spring, it's less intense than grown-up garlic.  Stir into soft-scrambled eggs or sauteed veg to take its edge off.

spring onions - A young allium with a tiny bulb and a tender stalk.  Slice paper-thin and enjoy raw, or quarter and caramelize in the oven.

ramps - technically a wild leek.  Roast or grill to bring out fragrant garlic notes, then serve with ricotta as a luxe toast topper.