Vidalia onion and cucumber salad, sweet onion confit and fried Vidalia onion

Vidalia onion and cucumber salad, sweet onion confit and fried Vidalia onion

Who doesn’t love a sweet tooth for a sweet onion every now and then? That thick slice of Rockies purple red onion on a burger at Coors Field? Candies that are slowly and forever cooked into a jam-like confit, sweeter than any ordinary onions could make?

It’s almost impossible to think of a cuisine anywhere that doesn’t use onions, but sweet onions are special. (They are also a small percentage of the world’s crop.) Lots of candy is sold in Colorado, such as Walla Walla in Washington, Maui in Hawaii, those Rockies-purple red Bermuda, or even Colorado Sweet in our own state, which has been here for most years. available from August to October.

But nearly half of all the sweet onions chefs buy in the United States come from Vidalia, Georgia, and bear that name. Discovered accidentally (and fortunately) in the 1930s during the Great Depression, a Vidalia has a sugar content of a whopping 12 percent versus a normal onion of 5 percent.

Also, the low sulfur content of the soil around the town of Vidalia contributes to the Vidalia’s low “cry quotient”. (Onions make you cry because of their natural sulfur compounds that irritate our eyes.)

Two fun facts about Vidalias: They are the official state vegetable of Georgia, and their mascot’s nickname is “Yumion.”

The recipes here are three very different ways to eat Vidalias (or other sweet onions you could use instead).

One is a baked Vidalia recipe I learned from a close Denver friend who once did consulting work in Georgia and brought this recipe back as her “favorite way to eat an onion.” It’s an amazingly delicious rendering and tastes like French onion soup in a block.

Another is from a regional cookbook with recipes from around the country; you may eat the Vidalia raw but slightly pickled. And the third recipe is from my favorite home French cooking website, I translated for you a simple onion confit made with sweet onions. Enjoy it alongside a charcuterie, as a topping for something grilled or on a spoon as is.

It’s so sweet.

Fried Vidalia Onion

The recipe is for the onion called “Vidalia”, from the state of Georgia. Of course, you can also use other sweet onions, such as a Washington State Walla Walla or, to keep it real, a Colorado Sweet. Makes 1 but is easy to multiply. A whole onion is a suitable serving for 1 person, especially if it is accompanied by other foods to round out the service.