Food Onion or no onion?

Discussion in 'UK Wine Forum' started by Thom Blach, Oct 12, 2018.

  1. Tortilla town sides with underdog no-onionists in recipe rivalry
    I can see that it's an important question, and I have increasing sympathy with the Hindu view that alliums are not vegetarian ingredients, though I will never love the tortilla Espanola. It is not so much that eggs aren't one of my favourite things but that the combination of eggs and oil seems wrong to me, they need animal fats.
  2. Is that not Jain rather than Hindu Tom?
    Steven Pritchard likes this.
  3. A Jain diet is very difficult to understand. I’m guessing it’s where we get the phrase “plain Jain”...sorry...
  4. Jainism is generally regarded as a sect of Hinduism. Brahmin Hindus do not eat meat, onions or garlic and such impositions are also imposed on Hindu widows so that their baser passions are not inflamed. Onions and garlic are generally regarded as seasonings for flesh, not grains or vegetables, and I do see the point. Having had to cook many Indian vegetarian dishes without alliums over the last few years I often think the results are more cleanly flavoured thus.
    Will Devize likes this.
  5. Onions are definitely vegetarian.
  6. How do you cook an onion bhaji without onion?
  7. I’m not sure all Jain consider their religion a sect of Hinduism. I only know one. I’ll ask him tomorrow.
  8. It depends who you ask, I know several people who will passionately swear that they aren't. Though I suppose in a court of law your view might prevail.
  9. You can use any vegetable for a pakora!
  10. I can recommend a visit to the Shayona restaurant at the Neasden temple for anyone of the notion that alliums are an indispensable part of Indian cuisine.
  11. It wouldn’t pay for me to be too certain about these things. IIRC the medieval church in some cases classified rabbit (as well as fish) as suitable for consumption on vegetable-only fast days.
  12. Do they also believe the world is flat, deny climate change and believe that Elvis/Lord Lucan/Shergar/et al are alive and well on the moon?
  13. I have no interesting opinions on Eastern religions,or any other come to that, but I am definitely in the "onions in" camp when it comes to Tortilla. You should probably ignore this as I also occasionally add red peppers to the softening onions.
  14. Capybaras are definitely fish.
    Antti Jokinen and Andy Leslie like this.
  15. The great EL Wisty reminded us the “whale is not a fish, it is in fact an insect”.

    (Sorry, I had an anaesthetic yesterday, may still be a bit random today!)
    Spenser Hilliard likes this.
  16. I have discussed tortilla with several people of about my age who told me that their parents added not only onion but garlic.
  17. I've never had much truck with the arbitrary food taboos of bronze-age superstitions...:eek:
  18. I don't when it comes to their observation, Richard(though often they turn out not to be arbitrary at all) but I find the way that traditional diets have evolved to be endlessly fascinating and that trying to understand them is one of the best ways to start to understand entire cultures.
  19. I stayed once at a hotel in Switzerland who had a very large contingent of people on holiday from India.

    They had Indian vegetarian meals cooked for them and served buffet style. We joined in and the food was excellent.

    In an adjacent room similar meals except for onions were served for Jains.

    They told me that, as strict vegetarians, they didn't eat root vegetables (including onions. garlic, carrot) because the act of pulling them from the soil could be killing small insects in the soil
  20. Tortilla Espanola with not only onions but also green peppers. I will occasionally accept the removal of the peppers but hands off the onion!

    I take the point that eggs and butter are a lovely match but I keep the butter for scrambled eggs or French omelette.
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2018
  21. Try green.
    Red for roasting, green for frying.
    At least that's what I'm told by the resident Spaniard.
  22. I like it with green peppers too (but not the crap ones we get here, only the proper Spanish ones). Easy on onion or no onion - I've had great ones both ways.

    The quality of the olive oil is (obviously, given the quantity!) very important.
  23. Certainly no onion or shallots when cooking risotto, i.e. no soffritto.
  24. is that preference or authenticity? I'm confused! (sorry for indulging in the thread drift!) was just last night trying to reproduce the Ratana restaurant risotto Milanese
  25. Steve,

    soffritto was used in the old days because rice was transported in non perfectly hygenic conditions (such as jute bags). Hence the need to add some flavour. Nowadays every sort of pakcaging is squeaky clean hence no need for it. On the ground almost every household does it, in a restaurant no one will.

    There has been a premiumization in rice over the last few years in Italy (The Wife is from Pavia, the capital of Risotto) and you can get really awsome tasting rice these days for a song...

    Hope this clarifies and apologies for the drift...


    Thom Blach and Spenser Hilliard like this.

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