What is a shallot? Are onion and shallot the same? Is shallot a vegetable or a fruit? If you are not familiar with this amazing ingredient, here’s what you need to know. Shallot is a similar variety of onions. However, it is of a different species than the latter. Almost all recipes that call for an onion heat can use shallots as a substitute. You just have to be considerate with their distinction. The usual yellow onions that you use for cooking can be replaced with several shallot bulbs. For instance, a small regular onion can be substituted with three shallot bulbs, while a medium-sized onion requires about five or six shallot bulbs. This is very important if you want to achieve the sharpness that regular onions give to your dish. In terms of taste, onions give more heat compared to the hint of sweetness and a mild kick of sharpness that you can get from shallots.
Similar to picking good onions, it’s easy to pick out shallots from the good ones and those that are not. Even though they are small in size, a good shallot feels heavier than it looks; it is supposed to be firm with dry paper-like skins. Try to avoid the ones that feel soft and sprouted.
There are so many ways to enjoy a bunch of good shallots, you can fry them for garnish, make pickled ones, dice for sauces like vinaigrettes, serve raw with your salad, or glazed to be the side dish of your favourite meat like a roasted chicken.
Shallots are versatile as an ingredient with its flavourful taste of a combined onion and garlic.
Nutritional Facts (of approximately 100 grams) of Shallot contains:
- Calories: 75
- Protein: 2.5 grams
- Fat: 0 grams
- Carbs: 17 grams
- Fibre: 3 grams
- Calcium: 3% of the Daily Value (DV)
- Iron: 7% of the DV
- Magnesium: 5% of the DV
- Phosphorus: 5% of the DV
- Potassium: 7% of the DV
- Zinc: 4% of the DV
- Folate: 9% of the DV
Health Benefits of Using Shallots
- It may relieve allergy symptoms due to its quercetin contents, which act as a natural antihistamine that counters severe inflammation or respiratory reactions from seasonal allergies and asthma.
- It contains antimicrobial, anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, and anti-viral components.
- It may also contribute to maintaining a healthy body mass index and prevent excess fat buildups.
- It is also rich in antioxidants which help control circulation and normalize blood sugar levels.
Shallot Recipes in the UK
Shallots are packed with nutrients and are very easy to add to various dishes across different cuisines. Here are some recipes you might want to try to elevate your home cooking.
- Caramelised Shallot Pasta
- Shallot, Onion and Chives Tart
- Steaks with Shallot and Mushroom Sauce
- Caramelized Shallots with Balsamic Vinegar
- Herby French Shallot Soup
- Mushroom and Crispy Shallot Nachos
- Sage & Shallot Stuffing Balls
Here are some Indian dishes with shallots that you can try too:
- Shallot and Garlic Curry sauce
- Shallot or Small Onions Bhaji/Sabji with Coconut
- Potato Shallot Thoran
- Ulli Theeyal / Kerala Shallot Curry
- Indian Turkey Curry with Shallots
- Dal Chenchki (Red Lentils with Shallots)
- Runner Bean and Shallot Curry with Raita