Sweet Talk About Texas SpringSweet and Texas 1015 SuperSweet Onions
Onions sweet enough that they don't bite back? And mild enough to keep tear ducts from springing a leak? You bet! Texas SpringSweet and Texas 1015 SuperSweet Onions, the first fresh onions harvested each year, have become favorites among consumers nationwide for their distinctively mild, juicy and sweet-tasting characteristics.
What gives these onions such a sweet disposition? Researchers point to South Texas' sunny, semi-tropical climate and rich, fertile soil. Additionally, Texas SpringSweet Onions (the umbrella name for all South Texas onion varieties shipped from March to June) also contain very little pyruvate, the chemical that causes tears and strong flavor. Further, the 1015 SuperSweet Onion, a SpringSweet variety, has become a Lone Star State legend for its even milder, juicier characteristics.
Texas 1015 SuperSweet Onions - The Sweetest In Its Class
The 1015 SuperSweet Onion, named after its recommended planting date of October 15, was introduced by the South Texas onion industry in 1985 after 10 years of research. It is the sweetest, mildest onion anywhere in the world.
Texas 1015 SuperSweets are available from mid-April through May and are predominantly single-centered, making them ideal for large, uniform-size onion rings. They also grow to softball-size proportions, often weighing in at one pound or more each and measuring over four inches in diameter. The optimum-size eating onion - in terms of mildness and sweetness - measures three to four inches in diameter and weighs 14 to 16 ounces.
Great Taste and Healthful, Too
Texas sweet onions not only taste great, they're good for you, too. Onions have naturally occurring compounds that have been reported to lower blood pressure and reduce cholesterol levels in the blood. They also contain quercetin, an antioxidant that has been found to inhibit the growth of some cancer cells. Another healthful bonus: Onions are low in calories and are a good source of vitamin C.
Storage and Selection Tips
Look for Texas SpringSweet and 1015 SuperSweet Onions with shiny, thin skins and tight, dry necks. Because these onions have a high water content, they require more care when storing. Keep them in a dry, well-ventilated area, either in a single layer or in netting or hosiery with a knot separating each onion. When stored properly, Texas SpringSweet and 1015 SuperSweet Onions will last up to 30 days from harvest. Be sure to store cut onions covered in the refrigerator.
Sweet Menu Ideas For Spring
These mild, sweet onions can be used in countless applications and in any recipe that calls for onions. They're especially good eaten raw - tucked into sandwiches, sprinkled in salsas, sliced for salads or dunked in dips. When cooked, the flavors of these mild onions become even sweeter. You'll also want to add them to soups, casseroles, quiches, pizza and pasta dishes.
Texas Sweet Onion Equivalents
One pound of Texas sweet onions equals about:
5 to 6 cups rings
2 1/2 cups chopped
- Rio Grande Valley Marinated Onion Salad
- Rio Ranch Texas Gazpacho
- Foil-Wrapped Texas SpringSweet Onions
- Wild West Pico de Gallo
- Texas SpringSweet Onion Rings
Sweet Texas Onion Sensations
Use these tips to incorporate Texas SpringSweet and Texas 1015 SuperSweet Onions into a variety of quick-fix fare.
- Toss together onion slices, crumbled blue cheese, toasted walnuts, mandarin orange pieces and assorted salad greens. Dress with a light vinaigrette.
- Sauté onions in butter or margarine until golden brown. Spread over baked cheese pizza crust (such as Boboli). Sprinkle with chopped tomato, sliced olives and Parmesan cheese. Bake until golden brown.
- Peel and quarter onions and thread onto skewers. Brush with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Grill until tender and streaked with brown.
- Cut tomatoes and onions into thick slices and arrange on a plate. Sprinkle with salt; let sit 20 minutes. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with lime juice and chopped fresh basil. Top with crumbled blue cheese, if desired.
- Toss garbanzo and kidney beans with chopped onion and Italian dressing. Serve at room temperature.