What Are Shallots?

It’s a contentious issue across the country. Depending on which state you’re from, where you shop or the recipe you read, the humble shallot can mean many different things. So what are shallots? Which ones are spring onions? And what are eschallots?

So that everyone is on the same page, at 12WBT we call the long, green, thin variety with an immature bulb a shallot, which is the name that variety is given in NSW and the ACT. If you’re not from NSW, it may be called a spring onion. Confusing, right?

We’ve addressed the great spring onion or shallot debate on the blog before. Here’s the 12WBT view on which are which,  .

What are Shallots?

Shallots are a member of the allium family, which also includes onions, leeks, chives and garlic. They’re sold in bunches and are available all year round. Shallots have a mild flavour and can be used raw in salads, lightly sautéed or added to stir-fries. The white part has the strongest oniony flavour, but you can use the whole vegetable.

To store shallots, trim off the long ends, wrap in plastic wrap and place in the crisper section of the fridge for up to two weeks. Leftover shallots can be added to sandwiches, salads, stir-fries, Asian cooking or wherever a mild onion flavour would suit.

Our popular Ginger Salmon Stir-fry recipe contains the long, green, thin variety of shallots. Get your free shallot recipe.

What are Spring Onions?

Spring onions have small, white bulbs with long, green stems. Spring onions are the more mature version of shallots – the green tops have a much more intense flavour and the white bulb has a sweet taste.

Like shallots, spring onions can be stored in the crisper section of the fridge, covered with plastic wrap, for up to two weeks.

What are Eschallots?

Eschallots are small and brown, with paper-like skin. They have a much sweeter flavour than regular brown onions and can be used as an alternative to them.

They should be stored in a cool, dark place away from moisture and humidity.

Hopefully this helps to clarify what we mean when we say shallots in our delicious 12WBT recipes.

Happy cooking!

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1 Comment

  1. Point of order: What you have identified as “Shallots” are properly known as “Scallions.” Also called “Green Onions” here in the US. The Eschallots, are simply “Shallots … ” 🙂

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