Most Economical Onions?
Perhaps a silly question, but if you're shopping for value, do you buy the 5 lb bags of onions? They're usually smaller, which I think might lead to more waste (skin, etc) per pound. Also, can someone link me to an onion primer? Yellow vs White vs Red vs Vadalia and why use what when. Thanks!
vedalia - is a very sweet onion and I find it loses its flavor when cooked - so I like these raw on bagels or in salads - also there are texas sweets that fall into this category
Yellow and White - these tend to be the ones I cook with much stronger flavor and hold up to cooking - also will use them for slads/bagels just because of their sharp bite when eaten raw
Red - which also is a spanish onion IMO tends to be a little sweeter the white or yellow but still has a sharp bite - will use like white or yellow but am cautious in what I am cooking with because its color will show throw - also will use its color for a salad -
In terms of whether to buy loose or the bag really falls down to two factors which look better and what is the price per pound
This was on the boards a short while ago
I'd say the most economical is the greatest volume at the cheapest price which won't spoil on you.
You can buy a 2lb bag for under a buck (maybe like 40c/lb), but sometimes 50lbs for maybe $5 (10c/lb) - if the onions go bad before you can use them, it might not turn out as such a deal (we buy 10lb or 20lb bags).
As for size, I'm guessing that the difference in waste from a large or small onion is negligible. To me, work-wise, peeling a small onion is the same as peeling a large one, but the yield is smaller, so I don't like small onions - more work.
In the fall I buy a 50 lb. bag of yellow no-sprout onions at my local farmers market. It costs about $15. I keep it in a cool place in the house (basement, if I can get my husband to carry it down for me) and it will last me until March or April. Can't beat the price and they're good sized onions too.
I'm not sure about the economy of it all but I suppose the greatest value comes from those onions you plan to use during a week and the price of each variety you need. We tend to buy onions according to what we're cooking or which recipes we are cooking from.
In my experience the large white onions are very mild and are used primarily raw in salads and are great for burgers.
The sweet Vadalias are just that.... sweet, like the Walla Walls from Texas.
We call the red onions Bermudas because that's what we were taught way back when. They tend to be sharper than the whites.
The Spanish onions are milder than the yellows. We use both Spanish and yellows primarily for cooking, although once in a while you'll find whites called for too. In fact I think white onions are terrific for cooking various fish dishes.
Here's a very good site which discusses the different varieties of onions:
I always go to a gardening site when I want to now about a particular vegetable. The seedsmen grow huge varieties of veggies and know everything there is to know about them.