One of my favorite springtime moments is when the new onions start appearing at the farmers' markets. And they just happen to make an excellent pickle.
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These pickled spring onions can play a number of roles. Dolloped on top of a burger, a basic cookout becomes quite gourmet. Need to bring an appetizer to a party? Toast baguette rounds, add a smear of creamy goat cheese and top with a bit of pickled onion. A bowl of baby arugula becomes a salad with a forkful of pickled onions and a drizzle of olive oil.
From the moment I first tucked into a savory, cheese-covered bowl of French onion soup as a kid, I've been hooked on the idea of onions as the star of a dish. Early springtime, when farmers' markets hold more in the way of promise than actual produce, is the perfect time to offer a little more plate space to the onion. These grilled spring onions, sprinkled with feta cheese and lemon juice, pair beautifully with grilled meats.
While I was in Italy, seasonal eating took on a whole new meaning. When something was in season you ate it, not once or twice but every day until it was gone. There were weeks of fresh favas and seemingly...