Substitute for pearl onions?

Hi friends,
I'm making Smitten Kitchen's Mushroom Bourguignon ( for Christmas… I'm in New Zealand and can't find pearl onions anywhere. The closest I could find are small shallots, which are too big to use whole. Any recommendations on how to include them in the dish? The pearl onions are nice because they hold their shape and give a burst of onion-ness. I'm trying to think how to replicate that without them… thanks!!



CurioCook December 23, 2013
Thanks all. No canned or frozen in New Zealand, apparently! I found small pickling onions (not yet pickled) so I'll follow your suggestions with those. I have seen some recipes that suggest you can put them in whole but that seems a bit much! And do come visit - I've only been here for a few months so far, but it is amazing!
creamtea December 23, 2013
Small pickling onions are likely the same thing; you need to blanch to remove the peels. They can be used whole, if about 1 to 1-1/2 inches in diameter.
Emily W. December 23, 2013
Hi curiocook,

I would cut the shallots in half and then peel them away so you have layers. Add them in 15 or so minutes before you serve so they still have a nice shape, a little crunch to them, and soak up the flavors of the sauce.
LeBec F. December 23, 2013
def longer than 15 minutes. at least an hour- to cook through .
Pegeen December 23, 2013
You might want to check the frozen vegetable section, or canned vegetable section of your stores, Obviously you don't want pickled jarred onions, used in cocktails or martinis!

Otherwise totally agreed with Le Bec Fin that you should just use onion or shallot wedges. They will fall apart a little as the Boeuf cooks, but that's fine.
LeBec F. December 23, 2013
Can I come sleep on your couch now? I want to see your country soooo badly!
CurioCook December 23, 2013
Amazing, thanks!!!
LeBec F. December 23, 2013
i have never used pearl onions in my Bf Bourg. I use smaller onions, cut into wedges with the root end intact (holds them together). And you could use shallots in the same way but prob only need to cut in 1/2 or 1/4 s.
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