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Jul 18, 2011 05:09 PM

Can I reuse these onions?

So, in about an hour, I'll have refried beans, but part of the recipe says to discard the onion after being in the pot for 2 hours. I have an issue with tossing an entire onion when I'm about to make 15 bean soup with ANOTHER whole onion, so can I reuse the onion that's been simmering for 2 hours in the beans in the soup?

Does that question even make sense?

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  1. Sure, it just won't have much flavor left and the texture will be mushy so I wouldn't consider it a replacement for the onion your soup recipe requires.

    1 Reply
    1. re: escondido123

      Hmm ok. Thanks.

      Maybe I'll just make some sandwiches.

    2. Mash/puree it and mix some or all back into the beans which will give them even more flavor. Def don't use it in another dish.

      1. It makes perfect sense. Whenever a recipe tells me to discard anything edible it offends me deeply - in fact, it offends many generations of my thrifty forebears, who would probably do a mass haunting on me if I dared to throw that thing out!

        Now, the cooked onion is not going to have much of any seasoning power left, and will be useful only as an ingredient. Does this soup you're making include its onion as part of what you eat? If so, you will still need an onion to season the soup. Perhaps you could use a smaller one and cut it up for flavor, and then add the cooked one (also cut up) at the end.

        If you don't want extra onion in the soup, there are various things one could think of to do with a cooked onion. I make lots of gravies by simply puréeing the vegetables the meat was braised with and adding broth, and if I had an extra cooked onion I might just wrap it airtight and freeze it for such a use as that. It would be good to mash it thoroughly and add it to a meatloaf as one of the moistening ingredients, or to meatballs or cabbage stuffing.

        If the onion has spent the night in my crockpot, I'll admit, I will probably throw it out, along with the bones and the spent celery. But two hours? Hey, that's just COOKED!

        1. I don't know where you live, but are onions really that expensive? Why would you want or need to reuse an onion?

          1 Reply
          1. re: Cheflambo

            Thrift is not about saving money, it's about conserving resources. Yes, you can certainly take your "Don't throw that out! It might come in handy!" thing too far, leading to bedrooms stuffed with old phone books. But there are some of us who were brought up to believe that discarding edible food is a mortal sin against the Holy Ghost, and have never gotten over that.

          2. A pot of stock seems like a good place for it, if you happen to be making some.Actually I think it could add a nice texture and a little flavor pureed and added to a stock pot for soup or stew. For 15 bean soup, which I make sometimes, I would use it and think it would be quite nice.