There are green onions and salad onions. But among these two, it is the green onion, with its array of names that is the most confusing. They are called everything from scallions and bunching onions to spring onions and shallots.
Green onions are harvested before they develop bulbs. They are basically seedling onions picked when the tops reach about 12 to 18 inches in height. Some varieties have a slightly swollen white bulb, while others have no bulb.
Spring onions are available throughout the year but the youngest and most tender ones are found in spring and early summer. Remember that the smallest, thinnest ones are the youngest and best. Choose onions with straight leaves and white bulbs.
They shouldn’t be stored in the refrigerator and keep best in a cool, dry, airy place.
Before cooking, trim the root and about a centimetre from the green tops. The bulb can be eaten raw or cooked but the tops are best when chopped and added to a dish just before serving.
When raw or very lightly cooked, green onions impart a vibrant yet mild flavour. If roasting, slice into two and place in a lightly-oiled baking pan. Season with salt, pepper, a dash of red wine and balsamic vinegar. Roast at 375-400' for 5-10 mins or till light golden. Spring onions develop a succulent sweetness during this process.
If braising, don’t peel or trim. Put in a saucepan and just cover with water, stock or wine. Season. Cover pan and bring to a boil over high heat. Simmer for 25 mins till tender. Cool, then slip off the fine skin and serve.
prawns with spring onions
Ingredients: 1kg shrimps, cleaned with the tails; 6 spring onions, washed and sliced; 4 cloves garlic; 80 ml olive oil; 1 bunch parsley, finely cut; 1/3 cup of white wine; salt and pepper to taste.
Method: In a blender, blend the oil and the garlic. Add parsley and spring onions and blend again. Finally, pour the wine into the mixture and stir. Season and keep aside. In a non-stick pan, add the blended ingredients along with the prawns and saut' on high heat till the prawns are cooked through. Check the seasoning and serve.