To know me is to know I love pickles. I've even had a modicum of success canning my own the past couple of years--though I confess I mainly use the premix seasonings that are sold by Ball and Mrs. Wages in envelopes and sometimes pickle cauliflower way out of season just because it's cheaper and I love it.
This late spring and summer, though, I had a bumper crop of onions, and sought to pickle them. It was kind of surprising that most recipes I could find either had you pickle them for instantaneous use or were aimed at those who had cocktail size onions on hand. But then I found this recipe for Crunchy Golden Pickled Onions and tried it, from cider vinegar and cloves to the 2-week waiting period. Today was the uncapping, and as advertised--well, promoted at least--they are very tasty and quite crunchy.
I think they taste a little like stuffing or yeah, cocktail onions, and think they'll go swell with cheese and crackers or on ham sandwiches or burgers. I'm here to tell you they're good with hoop cheese toasted on Trader Joe's light rye, for sure.
Another note: I'm planning to keep up the good work with these onions and plant another batch for fall in a week or so, right up to November, as recommended by the fellow at the Ace Hardware on Chapman Highway. (You can also buy onion "sets" at Knox Feed and Seed in East Knoxville and probably lots of other nurseries and hardware stores locally, too.)
They practically grew themselves planted in about April, and we still have a few in the ground. We (okay, Wade, resident gardener) just dug a trench about six inches deep in our raised bed, laid down a bit of compost, covered it with an inch or so of dirt, and then stuck the root end of the little onion starts in that and covered them with soil. The green tops are good in quiche, then the "spring" onions come up and are good in salads and stir fries, to name a few, and a few weeks or month later, you've got the full size. I admit we left some in the ground so long they formed brown onion skins, and then grew another layer around that, and a couple got kind of mushy, but all in all it was the hands-off gardener's dream crop.
One last tip: If you're going to plant, grow harvest and then pickle here in a few months, I recommend picking up some vinegar and canning jars now, while they're cheap and plentiful. Even though I used these gorgeous pint-and-a-half jars I would recommend the wide mouth pint jars for later, as they're not so tall, which makes a boiling water bath that will cover them by an inch or so that much easier.