It’s finally summertime up here in the Pacific Northwest and for us that means lots of salads and barbecue. I know that I’ve been talking about both of those things quite a bit lately, and for good reason, they’re delicious! For today’s post, I am sharing the recipe for our favorite salad topping of all time, Crispy Shallots. These simple baked shallots are incredibly flavorful and have a great crispy, crunchy texture that is perfect for a salad topping!
What is a shallot?
Don’t worry if you find yourself asking this question. This is probably the most common response I get when I tell people about this recipe and it seems like a lot of people have never heard of shallots. But we love the around here. They aren’t a very common ingredient in the U.S. but this little vegetable is packed with flavor and nutrients. Shallots are actually just a variety of onion and share a lot of qualities with more common onion varieties. They most likely originated in South Asia and have been cultivated for thousands of years across Asia and Europe. Their flavor is very pungent and similar to the flavor of onion and garlic and will also similarly affect your eyes when they are being prepared. You might end up crying a little bit. Apparently, deep-fried shallots similar to this recipe are used as a condiment in Asian cuisine.
What are the health benefits?
Shallots have many health benefits similar to regular onions and are actually even more nutritious. They contain flavonols and polyphenolic compounds in even higher concentration than onions and garlic. They are also rich in antioxidants which reduce cell mutation and cancer rates, and have been linked to a reduction in lung, oral, stomach, colorectal, and breast cancer. Additionally, they have a higher mineral content than onions including iron, copper and potassium which help to increase circulation.
Shallots are also highly beneficial for cardiovascular health in other ways as they contain a combination of micro-nutrients that work to reduce cholesterol and blood pressure, which can help prevent a number of cardiovascular diseases. Also, like many other nutritious vegetables, shallots contain compounds that help regulate blood sugar levels which can affect energy level and help diabetics control their blood sugar. Finally, they also contain a variety of vitamins and minerals that help stimulate the production of GABA in the brain which regulates stress and hormone levels.
As always, feel free to Chef Around and use these crispy shallots for whatever dishes you like! We have used them quite a few times now and they make a great addition to almost anything! What will you top with this delicious recipe?
These crispy shallots are a great topping for salads.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
Wash shallots and slice thinly, separating the rings.
Toss in olive oil and season to taste with salt and pepper.
Spread evenly on a lined baking sheet and bake for 15-20 minutes, flipping halfway through so that they brown evenly.
You may need to remove some of the rings early because some will be crispy before others and you don't want them to burn.