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Onions and Leeks

I can’t make a meal without at least one onion.  They are a basic component of a lot of casseroles, soups, stews, and I use them to add more flavor to a lot of different vegetables.  Raw, the mild red onions are great in salads.  The large yellow sweet onions are great on a burger or even sauteed into an onion pie.  Added to potatoes, they add a nice richness and flavor.  Harvested for their flavorful greens, the bunching onions are wonderful in salads or sauteed with any vegetable.  One of my favorite soups is a potato and green onion soup, inspired by the more traditional potato and leek soup.  I like to plant my onions densely so that I can thin and use all those wonderful greens for soup.

Leeks are related to onions, but grow like really big green onions.  They have a mild, onion flavor and are delicious in soups or oven roasted with carrots.

It can be difficult to choose the right onion for your area.  Onions develop their bulb according to how much daylight they receive during the summer.  Northern growers have longer days in the summer, so they need to grow long day onions.  Southern growers have more uniform days throughout the year, so they need short day onions.  If you choose the wrong onion, it will form green onions, but won’t form a bulb.