Have you ever seen a kitchen without onions? Onions are a common vegetable used in cooking any spicy or savoury dish. Onions do not have much nutrition but are a powerhouse of flavour. Onions have a pungent, savoury, sweet taste that adds a unique kick to the dish.
There are various types of onions available. It is necessary to choose the right type of onions to cook the tastiest dish.
Onions are sulfurous orbs that can be roasted, grilled, caramelized, pickled, deep fried or served raw in salads, sandwiches and as a garnish. The scientific name of the onion is “Allium cepa”, belonging to the genus Allium. The shoots and bubs of the onions are eaten as salads or by cooking. Garlic, chives, shallots, and leeks are also relatable to onions.
You have noticed that when you cut onions, your eyes get watery. This happens because when you start cutting onions, sulfur-based vapour is released which irritates the eyes. China is the world’s largest onion producer followed by India, Egypt and USA. China alone produces around 24 million tons per year.
What is the difference between yellow onions and sweet onions?
Without wasting any time, let's go directly to the differences.
1. Physical appearance
The shapes of yellow onions and sweet onions are different. The sweet onions have a round shape and light-coloured skin. On the other hand, yellow onions have dark skin and are usually long or elliptical in shape.
People prefer to use yellow onions for regular cooking as they have more flavours. On the other hand, sweet onions are used for barbeques or frying as they have a sweet flavour and can be easily sauteed or caramelized.
Different onions have a different balance of sweetness and pungency. Sweet onions are sweeter than yellow onions. You will see that sweet onion has a soft texture because it contains more sugar. Yellow onions are less sweet and more pungent which adds more flavour to the dish.
4. Shelf Life
The shelf time of yellow and sweet onions is more or less the same. They should be stored in a dark and dry place for them to stay good for a long time. Moreover, the sliced onions will stay good in the freeze for 5 to 7 days.
Sweet onions are not available all around the year. They are seasonal and you might find them at a certain time of the year. On the other hand, yellow onions are available all around the year. Of their availability all around the year, they have high demand among people.
What to consider before buying onions?
Yellow onions are widely used in cooking but you might want to use red onions for salads. Also, dont go and buy a huge amount of onions as they will go bad after some time. While buying onions avoid the soft ones. Check them in your hands if they are heavy and firm. Onions with sharp pungent odours should be avoided as they are old and will go bad. To keep the onions good, store them in a cool, dark and dry place.
How onions are grown?
Onions are called temperate crops as they can be grown in temperate, tropical and subtropical climates. You will get the best onions when there is mild weather and no excessive heat, cold or rainfall. Plant onions in early spring to get the best onions in your garden.
Is it possible to substitute sweet onion for a yellow onion?
Yes, you can substitute sweet onion for a yellow onion but the dish might not be flavorful. Sweet onions have much less flavour and more sweetness than yellow onions.
Can I use sweet onions as regular onions?
It is better not to use sweet onions instead of regular onions. Sweet onions contain high content of sugar and less sulfur. Also, due to being less pungent, they do not add flavour and taste to the dish.