How to store onions:
Onions have always been on my list of ‘things I like to grow’ but I never reaped the full benefits of my home grown onions until recently. My typical onion growing habits included harvesting in the fall and ultimately throwing out half of my crop after it sat in a bucket for a few months and turned into a pleasantly smelling form of onion/mud soup.
Then one day, as I was contemplating my onion predicament I remembered reading somewhere that onions can last up to 10 months!! This seemed a little long, especially since mine were only lasting 8-10 WEEKS! After a bit of research I learned that onions need to live in a dark cool place where they have plenty of air circulation and they touch as little as possible. Although I hope to one day have a root cellar where this type of atmosphere would be available for now all I have is a garage.
So, here is how to store onions for a longer shelf life.
1- In the Fall the tops of onions will turn brown and begin to fall over. After most of them have fallen wait an additional 2 weeks to begin harvesting.
2- Onions can be harvested and eaten at any time and any size. However, for long term storage you want to use large onions that are at the end of their growing season.
3- Brush off the dirt and clean the onions the best you can without damaging their skin (do not use water).
4- Spread out your onions in a warm dry place without direct sunlight, rotate occasionally. Allow the onions to cure until the skins crackle and the roots are dry and wiry (about 3 weeks).
5- For long term storage use onions that are free from blemishes and bruises. Eat young, thick necked bulbs first as they will not store as well. Onions stored for the winter need to be in GREAT condition to begin with!
6- Using a pair of kitchen shears trim the onion root and the onion top to a manageable size.
7- Cut the legs from a pair of pantyhose.
8- Carefully place the onions in the legs of the panty hose one at a time, tying a knot after each onion. Repeat until the leg is filled.
9- Hang your onion stocking in a cool, dark place.
To use stored onions simply cut off needed onions and leave the rest to hang.