You might recall the pickled cocktail onion that I posted about some days ago. Despite my expectation that these would ‘just be eaten over the next few days’, I was at an initial loss for ways to use them.
I mean, when do you actually eat cocktail onions? Think about it. Try to bring to mind the last time you had one. Yeah, I couldn’t do it either. Do they tend to go in drinks?
With the amount of vinegar and the sigh sugar content in my pickled onions, I wasn’t particularly worried that they would go bad, even if I didn’t use them within my self-imposed time limit of ‘a few days’. What worried me was this: If I can’t think of a way to use pickled cocktail onions today, how will I come up with something tomorrow?
Finally, I just decided to do something. The most appealing thing that came to mind was to use the onions someplace where both their sweetness and their tang would serve a purpose. And then I remembered this salad that I once made together with my mom when I was visiting her in Denmark. It didn’t feature pickled onions, but it was sort of a play on sweet and sour, which was the kind of thing I was looking for.
The salad is basically a bed of lettuce leaves with slices of pear, topped with balsamic-cooked onions and slightly melted blue cheese. I think that the original featured walnuts as well, but I went with the pickled cocktail onions instead.
I was slightly hesitant at the first mouthful. With this kind of salad, it’s all or nothing, you gotta stack that fork high and get a little bit of each component, otherwise you don’t get the full experience. This approach is inherently dangerous when you’re not entirely sure of the dish you’ve created.
But I went for it, and the risk payed off. I can heartily recommend this salad, even to those of you that don’t have cocktail onions to use up (I expect there would be a very limited audience otherwise…).
Once I got started on using the cocktail onions, more ideas popped into my mind. I settled on a grilled cheese sandwich: homemade sourdough bread, cheddar cheese, whole-grain mustard and halved cocktail onions. Grilled in butter, no less.
It was a grilled cheese-brunch-kind-of-day, and this really hit the spot.
But for the sake of next time I go pickling crazy, tell me, how do you like to eat pickled cocktail onions?