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- Don't wash your onions before storing them.
- You probably can't store all your onions. Use up the immature, soft and big-necked ones first, and store just the mature and thoroughly cured bulbs. Hanging them in mesh bags (sorted by size) is a good way to store them in a root cellar.(You can use the legs of old pantyhose for this.)
- Onions will keep best at temperatures between 32° F and 40° F, and the closer to 32° F the better. The temperature in a root cellar is usually a little higher. That's okay - root cellar temperature is a compromise anyway. (You can't please all the vegetables.)
- The humidity should be low, too, to slow down root development and the spread of rot organisms. Good ventilation is also important.
- It's not necessary to have a root cellar to store onions. If you follow the basics of onion storage, you'll have satisfactory results.
- Store only mature, well-cured onions.
- Keep onions in a cool dry, dark spot.
- Allow for good ventilation.
- Check occasionally for soft spots, sprouting, etc.
When the onions are dry, remove them from the dehydrator, cool them and store them in sealed containers in a cool, dry place.
If you like snack foods, onion rings that have been French-fried and then dried in a dehydrator are a delicious party treat. They don't store well unless they've been vacuum sealed, but they're so good they won't stay around long enough to need storage!
If you want to freeze whole onions, however, here's how: Peel and wash the onions and blanch them in scalding water until the centers are heated (three minutes for small onions, seven minutes for medium to large ones). Cool, drain and put the onions on cookie sheets, and place the sheets in the freezer. After they're frozen, put the onions in a plastic bag for convenient storage. Freezing them in this two-step way makes them easier to use; they stay separate, so it's easy to take out only the amount you need.
To keep large, European onions that don't store well, wash, chop and freeze them without blanching. Pack them in small containers, leaving 1/2 inch of headspace.
For the best flavor, use frozen onions within a month or two.