The Humble Onion

by Cynthia

Freshly Dug Onions

This year I grew onions in the garden and there are all but two left that I finally pulled up just this week. We managed to eat up all the rest rather quickly. They were so good on tomato sandwiches! I now know that for this house, I need to grow lots more onions next year.

We do cook with onions a lot in my house. They are such a versatile ingredient that adds so much to one’s cooking. Leave out onions and you are leaving out a lot of flavor. As tasty as they can be I have yet another reason for loving this simple crop.

Briefly on this blog I have mentioned my love affair with knitting but I have failed to mention yet another passion of fiber I have. This passion happens to combine my love of gardening with my love of knitting very well making it a power packed craft for me. What is this craft? Well, for a few years now I have been using herbs and other various plants from my garden to dye my yarn that I use in my knitting. It has been an incredibly addicting thing for me to do. All I want to do now is fill my garden up with plants that I can dye with.

That brings me back to the humble little onion. Not only is this one handy veggie crop to grow for eating BUT it can also be used for dyeing. The skins from yellow onions make an amazing dye and the colors you achieve from them are very beautiful. The picture below shows yarn that I dyed with onion skins just recently.

Naturally Dyed Yarn

Every time I pull out these skeins of yarn I am amazed that I can achieve this range of color just by using simple onion skins. So, the next time an onion starts to bring tears to your eyes as you cut it up keep in mind just how useful they really are!


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