Pickled Red Onions

This is possibly the quickest, easiest way to transform your meal into something special. It's true - imagine a simple taco, now imagine said taco with pickled red onions on it. Let's think outside this taco for a minute and explore what else you could improve with these onions. Sandwiches, salads, grilled cheese, fried rice, quesadillas, hot dogs - there are many more but I'm starting to get too hungry thinking about it. 

I like to keep a jar of these in the fridge and put them on everything. Since I can't have hot sauce, (why are you a nightshade, chile pepper???) I use these instead. They're not spicy at all but fulfill the same need with their sharp, briny punch. 

Feel free to add more aromatics if you like -  bay leaf, chiles, other seeds. I leave everything free floating in the jar but you can wrap the aromatics up in a piece of cheesecloth to keep things tidy. 

Pickled Red Onion

1.5 teaspoon kosher salt

1 teaspoon sugar

1/2 teaspoon black peppercorns

1/2 cup or so white vinegar

1 red onion, thinly sliced

Add kosher salt, sugar, peppercorns and vinegar to a 12-16oz jar. Shake or whisk to dissolve. Add onion slices to jar, pressing down to fit if needed. Top off with water so onions are covered in liquid, if needed. Leave them alone for one hour. After that, they are ready to eat. Store in fridge. 

Pickled Baby Carrots


I've been waiting all year for mini baby vegetables to happen.  Ever since a trip to San Francisco's Tartine Bakery I have been wanting to pickle some carrots.  Every one of their sandwiches are served with an adorable, spicy pickled baby carrot.  While these are not them, they are still very good. 

Makes 8oz jar.  (Use larger jar if you like, just increase vinegar + spice amounts as necessary.)  

Pickled Baby Carrots

Enough baby carrots to fill 8 oz jar

2/3 cup white vinegar

1 teaspoon sugar

2 teaspoons kosher salt

1/8 teaspoon whole cloves

1 cinnamon stick

2 dried chile de arbol

1/4 teaspoon caraway seeds

1/4 teaspoon black pepper corns

Scrub and peel carrots and trim tops if needed.  Place carrots in jar, stem end up.  Set aside.  

Combine remaining ingredients in a small pot.  Heat and stir until salt and sugar have dissolved.  Pour over carrots.  Let stand at room temperature overnight.  

Carrots may now be stored in the fridge without further processing.   



Curry Falafel + Pickled Onions


If you live in nyc then you must already know and love the cheap vegetarian delight known as the falafel sandwich.  I know I do.  I decided to make falafels for dinner the other night using my new food processor and while delicious, standing over a pot of hot frying oil I did ask myself 'why am I going to all this trouble when I can just pop down the street and get a tasty one for 3 dollars?'     

I don't know why.  But I did go through the trouble and they were great.  

(I got a little lazy and purchased an already made tzatziki sauce from whole foods.  Poor decision.  Next time I'll make my own with plain greek yogurt, lemon juice, garlic, dill, salt, pepper and cucumbers.  Silly me.)  

Curry Falafels

1 onion

2 garlic cloves

1 tin chickpeas, drained

1/4 cup fresh parsley

2 tablespoons curry powder

s + p

juice of 1/2 lemon

1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 cup flour

Oil for frying

Pickled Red Onions

3/4 cup apple cider vinegar

1 tablespoon sugar

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 red onion, thinly sliced

For Serving:  shredded cabbage, lettuce, diced tomatoes, tzatziki, hot sauce, hummus, pickled jalapenos and pita bread are all great

For the Falafel:  In a food processor, coarsely chop garlic and onion.  Mix in chickpeas, parsley, curry, lemon, pepper flakes, s + p and baking powder.  Add flour.  (The flour is going to help hold the mixture together.  If during frying the balls start to flake off or come apart then you will need to add more flour.)

Heat 2 inches of oil in a pot to 350 degrees and remember to BE CAREFUL (it's hot).

Form falafel mixture into ping pong sized balls.  Gently place them in oil and fry about 8 minutes until crispy and dark brown.  Transfer to a paper towel to drain.  

For pickled onion, In a small bowl, stir vinegar, sugar and salt until dissolved.  Add onion and let sit at room temperature for 45 minutes.