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Old 12-28-2020, 09:03 AM   #1
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Onion Substitute

I am making a soup that calls for one medium onion. I am not an onion lover. What can I substitute for the onion?

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Old 12-28-2020, 10:09 AM   #2
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Just skip
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Old 12-28-2020, 11:36 AM   #3
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Do you like shallots? They're milder than onions. Or you can use chives.
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Old 12-28-2020, 11:43 AM   #4
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thanks
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Old 12-28-2020, 12:29 PM   #5
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I don't think chives would stand up if added at the same point in the recipe as an onion (which is usually very early on). Celery, fennel, and leaks would be good aromatic substitutes as well.
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Old 12-28-2020, 12:34 PM   #6
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I don't think chives would stand up if added at the same point in the recipe as an onion (which is usually very early on). Celery, fennel, and leaks would be good aromatic substitutes as well.
Good point. I would finish the dish with them.
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Old 12-28-2020, 12:55 PM   #7
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I don't really like biting into an onion, but virtually everything I cook has them. Depending on the recipe, I try to cut the onion into bigger chunks so they impart the flavor, but are easy to pick around.
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Old 12-28-2020, 01:30 PM   #8
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Most soup recipes call for a mirepoix (French), sofrito (Spanish), or soffritto (Italian), which is equal amounts of small diced onion, celery and carrot, so you could double the celery and leave out the onion, or you could replace the onion with leek, shallot or scallion. I have acid reflux problems with onion, but I have found that, if I sauté the onions over medium heat until they are just starting to brown, I don't get agita.
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Old 12-28-2020, 03:33 PM   #9
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You can puree the onion in a blender and they will just melt into the soup..I couldn't imaging not eating or cooking with onions...
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Old 12-28-2020, 04:32 PM   #10
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Couldn't put it better! If you don't like the flavor, leave it out.

However, there is something that can be used to sort of replace the onion, if it's the texture, or the cutting up of onions burns your eyes so bad that nothing seems to help, or a digestive problem, from the onions. It's asafoetida, or hing - an ingredient used in a lot of Indian dishes. The Ayurveda Hindus (and probably some other sects) refrain from using onions and garlic in their cooking, and use a lot of the asafoetida, which gets an onion like flavor after cooking for a while - it's definitely not something you want put in raw food! I often use this when cooking some dried beans or lentils, for a salad, or something like that, that would call for cooking with a whole onion - a lot easier and cheaper than an onion, and it tastes like I cooked an onion in it!
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Old 12-29-2020, 01:47 AM   #11
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Couldn't put it better! If you don't like the flavor, leave it out.

However, there is something that can be used to sort of replace the onion, if it's the texture, or the cutting up of onions burns your eyes so bad that nothing seems to help, or a digestive problem, from the onions. It's asafoetida, or hing - an ingredient used in a lot of Indian dishes. The Ayurveda Hindus (and probably some other sects) refrain from using onions and garlic in their cooking, and use a lot of the asafoetida, which gets an onion like flavor after cooking for a while - it's definitely not something you want put in raw food! I often use this when cooking some dried beans or lentils, for a salad, or something like that, that would call for cooking with a whole onion - a lot easier and cheaper than an onion, and it tastes like I cooked an onion in it!

+1, yes asafoetida, smells like dirty socks and garlic and onions when uncooked. No one uses it uncooked. It is used to reduce gas (indian culture), and produces a gentle sweet garlic and onion flavor when cooked. It is quite nice. When packaged with rice flour, it is called "HING". It comes from a latex type of plant, like fennel or celery. I keep it on the spice shelf for making lentils.
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Old 12-29-2020, 04:55 PM   #12
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Onion cubes, onion powder, onion juice.

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Old 12-29-2020, 05:51 PM   #13
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Interesting, S&P.

Happened to see that today, while rushing through the store, making sure we had what we need for the, maybe, coming ice storm.

I didn't take time to look closely but will, next shopping trip.

Ross
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Old 12-29-2020, 05:58 PM   #14
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I don't really like biting into an onion, but virtually everything I cook has them. Depending on the recipe, I try to cut the onion into bigger chunks so they impart the flavor, but are easy to pick around.


Interesting. I do completely the opposite. I hate onion. But cannot imagine cooking without.
I cut/dice onions so small that by the time they are done there is nothing left of them.
And still, I think if a person doesn’t like onions, they can be simply skipped.
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Old 12-30-2020, 04:26 PM   #15
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Interesting. I do completely the opposite. I hate onion. But cannot imagine cooking without.
I cut/dice onions so small that by the time they are done there is nothing left of them.
And still, I think if a person doesn’t like onions, they can be simply skipped.
My husband loves all things onion, so it's a compromise :)


Is asafoetida a dried product or an actual vegetable? I've never heard of it but am definitely intrigued.
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Old 12-30-2020, 07:05 PM   #16
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I don't really like biting into an onion, but virtually everything I cook has them. Depending on the recipe, I try to cut the onion into bigger chunks so they impart the flavor, but are easy to pick around.
Welcome to DC, cowgyrl. You can also cut the onion into quarters, making sure to keep the root end intact. The quarters might divide into clumps of leaves, but it's easier than picking big pieces out of the dish.

BTW, you live in one of our favorite parts of the country we drive through. You know, back when we could actually travel. *sigh* Soon, again, I hope
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Old 12-30-2020, 07:16 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by cowgyrl View Post
My husband loves all things onion, so it's a compromise :)


Is asafoetida a dried product or an actual vegetable? I've never heard of it but am definitely intrigued.
Hi and welcome to Discuss Cooking
It's a dried powder. Here's more information about it.
https://www.thekitchn.com/inside-the...afetida-140001
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Old 12-31-2020, 01:19 AM   #18
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cowgyrl If you ever do decide to buy any asafoetida, be sure to look closely at the ingredient list, and get something that has asafoetida as the first ingredient. Many have other ingredients listed first, sometimes two of them! I've seen gum arabic and rice flour listed before the asafoetida. Years ago, even the Indian supermaket in my area didn't have the good stuff, so I ordered it from India! lol It was listed as 85% pure, and believe me, that stuff is potent! However, now Amazon has some with asafoetida as the primary ingredient. I still don't see the pure stuff, however, which is in cube form - something else I got from the same place in India. One Indian cookbook author I saw didn't even recommend using the powder, only the block form, broken off in little pieces, but I have yet to see it around here.
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Old 01-02-2021, 09:14 PM   #19
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Welcome to DC, cowgyrl. You can also cut the onion into quarters, making sure to keep the root end intact. The quarters might divide into clumps of leaves, but it's easier than picking big pieces out of the dish.

BTW, you live in one of our favorite parts of the country we drive through. You know, back when we could actually travel. *sigh* Soon, again, I hope
Thank you for not traveling. Sadly, WNC hasn't missed a beat with our tourism numbers. Sidewalks packed shoulder to shoulder all week.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GotGarlic View Post
Hi and welcome to Discuss Cooking
It's a dried powder. Here's more information about it.
https://www.thekitchn.com/inside-the...afetida-140001
Thanks!

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cowgyrl If you ever do decide to buy any asafoetida, be sure to look closely at the ingredient list, and get something that has asafoetida as the first ingredient. Many have other ingredients listed first, sometimes two of them! I've seen gum arabic and rice flour listed before the asafoetida. Years ago, even the Indian supermaket in my area didn't have the good stuff, so I ordered it from India! lol It was listed as 85% pure, and believe me, that stuff is potent! However, now Amazon has some with asafoetida as the primary ingredient. I still don't see the pure stuff, however, which is in cube form - something else I got from the same place in India. One Indian cookbook author I saw didn't even recommend using the powder, only the block form, broken off in little pieces, but I have yet to see it around here.
Interesting. I'll make sure to check closely.
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Old 01-02-2021, 10:00 PM   #20
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Here is a photo of the asafoetida, in powder form, and solid. The solid is in two colors, and the light is for dissolving in water, and the dark for putting in oil, like when making a tarka. I am not sure what they do differently to them, but I have only occasionally used the solid - when I run out of powder, I may make my own, with the solid, and some rice flour, in a mortar, just to use it up!
Asafoetida, 85 percent powder, and the two solid types. by pepperhead212, on Flickr
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