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When a recipe says to slice an onion, and doesn't say anything else, is the default/standard/understood procedure to cut the onion in half lengthwise and then slice each half lengthwise? Many thanks. ;o)

AntoniaJames is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

asked almost 7 years ago

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8 answers 928 views
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Amanda Hesser

Amanda is a co-founder of Food52.

added almost 7 years ago

That's what I take it to mean. I only slice crosswise if it specifies to do so.

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23b88974 7a89 4ef5 a567 d442bb75da04  avatar
added almost 7 years ago

I only slice crosswise if specified

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added almost 7 years ago

Slicing lengthwise will produce a milder onion tasting result than slicing crosswise. Slicing crosswise will damage more onion cells there by releasing the chemicals responsible for the pungent odors and flavors. So, I look at the end result I want in the dish and slice accordingly. Also, I don't thing that there is an "industry standard" for the meaning of sliced onions. Some authors detail the meaning of their terms, but that is not a universal standard.

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added almost 7 years ago

A julienne?

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AntoniaJames

AntoniaJames is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

added almost 7 years ago

I've wondered what a "julienned" onion looks like, given that it is a sphere. ;o)

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added almost 7 years ago

The macrobiotics of the '70s taught that onions should be sliced end to end to gain a balance of yin and yang, and I find it easier to handle the onion that way. My husband wants actual rings so he slices crosswise.

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added almost 7 years ago

I've heard, and it may be one of those apocryphal "tips" you get from TV food shows that may not be as true as they think....but.....

I have heard that slicing lengthwise gives you finer slices that hold up better, if that's your goal for the final dish. Like for a French Onion soup, where you want to really see the onion strings. Slicing crosswise, the slices will break down more in the cooking process. As Verdigris, says, its related to the amount of damage done to the onion's cellular structure. I usually do crosswise for most applications, but do find I can get consistently thinner slices if I go lengthwise.

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23b88974 7a89 4ef5 a567 d442bb75da04  avatar
added almost 7 years ago

Heres a video showing how to julienne an onion.

http://www.bing.com/videos...

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