Harvesting Onions – Lots to Eat
The trunk and greens of onions are just as good as the onion bulb, so don’t waste any of this good food.
When harvesting onions, remember that there is more to eat than just the bulb, there are the tops as well. Just this morning I took a small handful of chopped and dried onion tops and crushed them into a pan of onions, celery and thyme simmering in butter. On top of that I cracked open three eggs and made a delicious scrambled egg dish.
The eggs were fresh, but the dried onion tops were about three years old.
Many of us aren’t familiar with the top of the onion, only because we rarely if ever buy that product in the store. Usually it’s just the bulb. That’s okay, but if you’re growing your own onions, be sure to harvest everything. You can harvest a few of the greens at a time, or process the entire onion plant when you retrieve the bulb. The only things that need to be tossed on the compost pile are yellow or dead foliage.
I don’t do anything special to preserve my onion tops, I just cut them into a length I think might be handy and then dry them. After they’re dried, I put them in a plastic bag. I use them like chives or in place of onions. This morning I used them with fresh onions…it was a regular reunion of onion bulb and onion greens.
This type of food use I call “double harvest” because you’re harvesting more than what one might traditionally harvest. Many leaves of plants are edible, so when you toss out the greens you’re often tossing away good food.
Clair Schwan grows a wide range of foods. He believes it’s one of the most basic of all self-reliance skills…feeding yourself.