Green onions are a commonly used vegetable that has a place in many if not all of the world cuisines. It’s also known under many different names including: scallions, spring onions, or salad onions). They are a variety of the onion spicy and they are harvested before full maturity of the onion.
It’s a big part of many cuisines partly because it’s so healthy and it has so many benefits for those who eat it. At the same time, it’s versatile in terms of how it can be cooked.
- They are also known as Welsh onion
- You can tell different varieties apart by looking at the leafs near the bulb and see how they turn white
- They are a part of a lily family
The first thing to look for when selecting the onions is at the bulbs and the conditions they are in. You’re supposed to look for the bulbs that are white, fresh and undamaged. The top of the green onion should also look fresh and bright green. It should also be 8 inches long.
The onions are a cool climate vegetable meaning that they are in season in spring fall and winter and that’s when you should buy them if you want to make sure that they are fresh and organically grown.
Production & Farming in Texas
Green onions are grown both commercially and in private and small community gardens. Those coming from small gardens and private homes are available when in season while commercially grown green onions are available throughout the year.
The plant is rather versatile and it requires nothing more than a sunny spot. They could be grown in zones 3 to 9 in the US. They are technically a perennial plant but they are not grown as such. They will require regular water so going overboard with the sunny spot for them means you’ll need to spend more water.
Sometimes the seeds are started indoors so that you make sure they can be transplanted, it takes five to six weeks to prepare them for transplanting and that should be done before the first frost. The seeds should be sow up to 12 inches deep.
Harvesting green onions is what their name depends on:
Green onions: Regular onions harvested before they form a bulb
Spring onions: Regular onions harvested when the bulb is smaller than a quarter
Scallions: Varieties that never form a bulb
Green onions need to be fertilized on a monthly basis and you should apply a thick layer of mulch to accomplish that. It should be removed in spring when the temperatures rise.
As much as 50 different pesticides are used on green onions and many of them stay on the plant after it was harvested so that’s something to be aware of when buying.
It’s believed that onions originated in central Asia, some however, thing that they were first used in what’s today’s Pakistan and Iran. It’s widely believed that they are grown for dietary purposes for over 5000 years and that they have become a part of every culture and cuisine across the world.
They were brought to America by the pilgrims but they haven’t been used as green onions as much as they are in Europe. Recently with the trends of healthy and cosmopolitan cuisine dominating the world they are used as such in the US as well.
There are two main types of packaging for green onions. They are sometimes put in packaging with ice and sometimes in packaging that don’t contain ice. It depends on how far the green onions are traveling. When they are packed with ice they are not put in a refrigerator but instead packed alongside blocks of ice to keep them cool.
When they are packed without ice, they kept in individual wraps mostly made out of plastic or just tied together with a string to form small bundles.
Both the bulbs and the leafs are edible but most people use it for the bulbs. When it comes to salads and sandwiches you’ll do good to use the leafs as well because they will add to the crunchiness and the fresh feel of the dish.
Rinse the onions under cold water and removed wilted and damaged tops. Lay several onions on the cutting board to increase efficiency and trim the leafs that won’t be used in a salad or in any other way.
The bulbs themselves should be cut based on how you plant to use them. For the most part that will be in small cubes.
For garnishes, salads, salsas, and other recipes in which the onion will not be cooked, cut into thin slices, about 1/8 thick.
For stir-fries, cut the green onions into 1-inch pieces.
To bias-slice, cut the green onions at a 45-degree angle. This works especially well for 1/2- to 1-inch slices.
For julienne or bite-size strips, slice each trimmed medium green onion in half lengthwise. Slice each half crosswise into 1- to 2-inch pieces.
Green onions could be eaten raw or roasted but used as a part of a salad. Since eating the raw and in a salad is simple enough, here’s a recipe for roasted onions you might enjoy. The bright flavor of onion becomes sweeter when it’s roasted.
Toss them in oil, season with salt and pepper, and roast until crispy and delicious. Use higher heat for a crisper crunch, or lower heat for soft, gently roasted, caramelized onions.
Green onions are a good source of vitamin K.
Each cup of green onions has 2,840 IU of vitamin A, which covers the entire daily vitamin A needs for women and nearly 95 percent of the needs for men. And even smaller serving, like a tablespoon, supplies up to 10 percent of your vitamin A needs. Your body uses vitamin A for proper vision, and relies on vitamin A to create new blood cells — including the white blood cells required for immunity.
Green onions also provide a generous amount of vitamin K. And if you’ve ever had a cut or scrape, you’ve seen the importance of vitamin K firsthand (even if you didn’t know it). This nutrient is responsible for blood clotting — so vitamin K helps you stop bleeding after a cut. It’s also important for your skeletal system, and plays a role in cartilage growth. A cup of chopped green onions has 111 micrograms of vitamin K, which is about 90% of the daily requirement for men and the full daily requirement for women.
When Are Green Onions in Season in Texas?
To find out when Green Onions are in season in Texas, please check the seasonal chart below. Why is this important? We are rarely encouraged to think about the physical lengths our food travels before arriving on the market shelves. And all of this travel comes with a hefty environmental cost that is concealed from the consumer’s eye. One of the most salient benefits to eating seasonally is that you are effectively reducing your carbon footprint and supporting a more geographically sustainable food economy. Check other fruit and veg that’s in season in Texas now.