If you are someone who is trying to use onions more often in your cooking, one thing that might cause you confusion is the fact there are actually so many varieties of onions. A frequently asked question that often causes even greater confusion is “are onions and shallots the same thing?”.
Well, the answer is simple: no.
Shallots are becoming more and more popular, and if you are trying to follow a recipe you’ve found online, you might need to use one. So, knowing about their taste and texture as well as how to perfectly use them in a recipe can be a big help for when you are cooking.
Both onions and shallots are members of the onion family, but as mentioned before, there are several varieties of onions. Onions are usually rounder in shape and can have white, yellow or purple skins. All these vary in taste, from sweet to bitter. Shallots on the other hand, are often brown in colour and have a distinctive tapered shape. The skins on the shallots are very fine and often dry.
Shallots also have a milder taste (and smell) than onions do. Because their flavour is so mild, people prefer to use shallots when the recipe required raw onions. Because of this, when cooked, shallots lose their flavour quickly, so if your recipe asks for cooked onions (like fried, for example) onions will suit best for this.
Both vegetables are equally good for your health. They both have a lot of vitamins and minerals, but do vary slightly in calories, carbs and protein.
When it comes to deciding when to use one or the other, all you need to keep in mind is how strong do you want the onion flavour on your dish to be. Shallots are specially good raw, so they work best on salads, for example. If you are looking for something more flavourful (like onion soup, for example) then use onions in this case.
M&P Engineering is a leading designer and manufacturer of food processing equipment, including their world-renowned onion peeling machine. M&P Engineering’s onion peeling machine uses a system of self-adjusting floating knifed assemblies to top, tail and peel onions in a dry peeling process. The dry onion peeling proceed is able to process up to 750kg of onions per hour.
M&P also provides filling and depositing machinery to the food production industry, delivering a reliable, fast process.
In addition to its range of onion peeling machines, M&P Engineering also offers further food processing equipment including its food depositors and rotary transfer units.
For more information, call us on +44 (0)161 872 8378 or contact us here.