NDSU Extension - Sargent County

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Onions, anyone?

Onions, anyone?  6/23/17Earlier this week the Sargent County Extension Advisory Council held their semi-annual meeting.  Members of the diverse group, through their commitment and contributions, help broaden and strengthen Extension programs to serve Sargent county citizens. 

Prior to the meeting, a light supper was prepared for the council members.  Grilled chicken breast on a bed of mixed greens was the mainstay.  An assortment of crunchy and colorful salad toppings, along with a variety of vinaigrette and creamy salad dressings, were available for each person to choose from to suit their personal tastes.

Thinly sliced red onions were available as one of the salad toppers to add a pop of flavor, color, and crunch to the salad.  My Extension colleague in Ramsey county, Brenda Langerud, recently wrote about onions in her news column.   Today I am sharing what she wrote.

Onions are a member of the Allium family. The Allium family, which includes garlic, onions, shallots, leeks, scallions and chives, has sulfur-containing compounds and flavonoids that provide health benefits. Studies with humans have shown that daily consumption of onions may increase bone density.

Moderate intake of onions - one to two times per week - has resulted in a reduced risk of laryngeal, ovarian and colorectal cancer in several studies.

Onions are available in white, yellow, red and green varieties. Whether sliced or chopped, onions can make a tasty addition to lettuce or pasta salads and sandwiches.

When selecting onions, choose those that are hard, firm and dry, with papery skin and small necks. Moisture at the neck and soft or dark spots may indicate decay. Avoid those with thick, hollow centers around the neck or fresh sprouts.

Store onions at room temperature in a well-ventilated, dry place.

Select green onions with fresh, crisp, green tops. Avoid those with wilting or discoloration. Store green onions in plastic in the refrigerator and use within a few days.

Onions are well-known for their distinctive flavor and aroma. French onion soup and baked onion rings are recipes that give onions a starring role. You can add grilled or sauteed onions  to burgers, sandwiches, steak, pork or chicken. Many soup recipes begin with sauteing chopped onion in oil.

Cutting onions can be a real tear-jerker. If you can’t finish chopping an onion with dry eyes, try these tips:

* Cut onions while standing to keep your eyes as far from the onion as possible.

* Chill the onion for 30 minutes to one hour before chopping to slow the gas release.

* Use a sharp knife so you can chop faster.

* Cut onions under cold, running water to reduce eye irritation.

Onions are one of the specialty crops that can be grown in North Dakota. Visit the North Dakota State University Extension Service’s Field to Fork website at www.ag.ndsu.edu/fieldtofork for more information about growing and using a variety of specialty crops, including onions.

Photo Source: https://pixabay.com/en/onions-vegetables-food-healthy-1397037/  downloaded 6/27/17

 

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