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Nick's Tip: Slice 'Em Up

by Nick Vitrano

There’s an old wives’ tale, dating back to the days of the bubonic plague, that sliced onions placed throughout the dwelling will ward off the illness.  The onion, it’s true, is absorbent like a sponge.  Its ability to soak up bubonic plague (or cold and flu) nasties?  Though there’s no scientific evidence to support this, you’ll find those who swear by its magically absorbent flesh. 

Here’s the way I look at it – it’s like a winning streak in any area of life: if you’re on roll because you’re wearing a certain pair of undies or eating a particular breakfast cereal, then you are!  If you believe you didn’t get sick this flu season (or had a shorter run of flu symptoms) because there’s a sliced onion next to your bed, then you did.  What do you have to lose this cold and flu season?  It’s a couple of bucks for a sack of onions.  So buy ‘em up and see what happens.  And in the process, you’ll enjoy some of these non-cooking related benefits:

  • Rust removal: Those rust spots on kitchen knives or utility slicers are no match for the onion.  Rub a sliced onion on the blades or simply plunge your knife into a large onion several times.
  • Elimination of odors: That new paint on the walls is great to look at, but the smell can linger.  Place a few onion slices in a bowl of water in the room and giddy-up.
  • Clean the grill: Stick a fork in a sliced-in-half onion and rub that baby on the grill grate to prep your grill for storage or just the next go ‘round tomorrow night.
  • Onions are natural remedies for bee stings, a solid smelling salts alternative (you know, because most of us don’t have smelling salts handy), and can polish up your metals.  You can even use the skins as a dye.  If you need a recipe, let me know – or just Google it up.

Happy slicing, and here’s to a healthier cold and flu season! 

Tease Image: Author - flikr from london, UK; source - flikr0114; via Wikimedia Commons