Champaign, Ill. (WCIA)

Guest chef, Lisa Lewey-Shields, is back talking all things ONIONS.

Cucumber Salad Recipe

Ingredients  

  • 2 cucumbers peeled and sliced
  •  half medium Vidalia onion
  • 1/2 cup white vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
  • 1 clove garlic finely minced
  • 1/2 cup water

Instructions 

Place cucumber slices into large bowl. Cut Vidalia onion into long thin strips and add to the bowl. In 2-cup measuring cup, add vinegar, sugar, salt, garlic, and water. Mix well with a fork and pour over cucumber and onions. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator at least an hour before serving.

Dry Onion Soup Mix

Ingredients

  • ¼ cup dried onion flakes
  • 2 tablespoons low-sodium beef bouillon granules
  • ¼ teaspoon onion powder
  • ¼ teaspoon parsley flakes
  • ⅛ teaspoon celery seed
  • ⅛ teaspoon paprika
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground black pepper

Directions

Stir onion flakes, beef bouillon granules, onion powder, parsley flakes, celery seed, paprika, and black pepper together in a bowl.

Use as a substitute for a 1-ounce envelope of dry onion soup mix.

Note:

To make this into soup, bring 3 1/2 cups water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Whisk in soup mix, reduce heat to low, and simmer for 5 minutes.

FRENCH ONION SOUP

Ingredients

  • ½ cup unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 cups sliced onions
  • 5 cups beef broth
  • 2 tablespoons dry sherry
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 pinch salt and pepper to taste
  • 4 slices French bread
  • 4 slices provolone cheese
  • 2 slices Swiss cheese, diced
  • ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese

Directions

Melt butter with olive oil in an 8-quart stock pot over medium heat. Add onions and continually stir until tender and translucent. Do not brown the onions.

Add beef broth, sherry, and thyme. Season with salt and pepper. Let simmer for 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, preheat the oven’s broiler.

Ladle soup into oven-safe serving bowls and place one slice of bread on top of each (bread may be broken into pieces if you prefer). Layer each slice of bread with a slice of provolone, 1/2 slice diced Swiss and 1 tablespoon Parmesan cheese. Place bowls on a cookie sheet and broil in the preheated oven until cheese bubbles and browns slightly, 2 to 3 minutes.

Onions

An onion, also known as the bulb onion or common onion, is a vegetable that is the most widely cultivated species of the genus Allium. The shallot is a botanical variety of the onion which was classified as a separate species until 2010. Its close relatives include garlic, scallion, leek, and chive

Onions contain antioxidants and compounds that fight inflammation, decrease triglycerides and reduce cholesterol levels — all of which may lower heart disease risk. Their potent anti-inflammatory properties may also help reduce high blood pressure and protect against blood clots

Though all vegetables are important for health, certain kinds offer unique benefits.

Onions are members of the Allium genus of flowering plants that also includes garlic, shallots, leeks and chives.

These vegetables contain various vitamins, minerals and potent plant compounds that have been shown to promote health in many ways.

In fact, the medicinal properties of onions have been recognized since ancient times, when they were used to treat ailments like headaches, heart disease and mouth sores.

Onions are low in calories yet high in nutrients, including vitamin C, B vitamins and potassium.

Research shows that eating onions may help reduce heart disease risk factors, such as high blood pressure, elevated triglyceride levels and inflammation.

Red onions are rich in anthocyanins, which are powerful plant pigments that may protect against heart disease, certain cancers, and diabetes.

A diet rich in allium vegetables like onions may have a protective effect against certain cancers. (slow the spread of ovarian and lung cancer)

Due to the many beneficial compounds found in onions, consuming them may help reduce high blood sugar.

Studies show that onion consumption is associated with improved bone mineral density.

Onions have been shown to inhibit the growth of potentially harmful bacteria like E. coli and S. aureus.

Onions are a rich source of prebiotics, which help boost digestive health, improve bacterial balance in your gut and benefit your immune system.

Onions can easily be added to savory dishes, including eggs, guacamole, meat dishes, soups and baked goods.

Easy to Add to Your Diet

Onions are a staple in kitchens around the world.

They give flavor to savory dishes and can be enjoyed either raw or cooked.

Not to mention, they can boost your intake of fiber, vitamins and minerals.

Here are some tips on how to add onions to your diet:

  • Use raw onions to add a kick of flavor to your guacamole recipe.
  • Add caramelized onions to savory baked goods.
  • Combine cooked onions with other vegetables for a healthy side dish.
  • Try adding cooked onions to egg dishes, such as omelets, frittatas or quiches.
  • Top meat, chicken or tofu with sauteed onions.
  • Add thinly sliced red onions to your favorite salad.
  • Make a fiber-rich salad with chickpeas, chopped onions and red peppers.
  • Use onion and garlic as a base for stocks and soups.
  • Throw onions into stir-fry dishes.
  • Top tacos, fajitas and other Mexican dishes with chopped raw onions.
  • Make a homemade salsa with onions, tomatoes and fresh cilantro.
  • Prepare a hearty onion and vegetable soup.
  • Add onions to chili recipes for a flavor boost.
  • Blend raw onions with fresh herbs, vinegar and olive oil for a tasty homemade salad dressing.

Dangerous for pets

While onions are a healthy component of human diets, they can be deadly for some animals, including dogs, cats, horses, and monkeys

The main culprits are sulfoxides and sulfides, which can induce a disease called Heinz body anemia. This illness is characterized by damage within animals’ red blood cells, which leads to anemia.

Make sure not to feed onions to your pet, and keep anything flavored with onions out of reach if you have an animal in your home.

Spring onions are older than scallions and green onions. Because they have been left to grow longer, their bulb is more developed and rounded.

The terms “scallion” and “green onion” refer mostly to the age of the plant. Though some species of onion will only produce either scallions or green onions, it’s possible to source them from other types of onion.

Though there are slight differences between scallions, green onions and spring onions, they can be used interchangeably in recipes. They’re often added to stews, stir-fries and salads.

AIR CLEANER – Old School

Cut up onions and place around the house. Change onions every 2 days.

Detoxes home and office and school.  Good to purify for flu/viruses. Fevers, viruses, bacteria, asthma, allergies, toxins, plaques, funguses.  Onions are one of the causes for food poisoning. 

Do not eat onions off salad bar unless you know they are fresh and not been sitting out uncovered.  Do not order onions on your sandwiches from restaurants.  You do not know when they were cut or covered.

Steep onion & water for a tea with distilled or spring water with some honey and ginger for allergies, colds, sinus, and sore throats.  Cover and store in refrig.  Never leave uncovered.