Sweetest Onions on Earth?
Every year, around mid to late May or early June, I start to feel a little restless, filled with anticipation. You know, that feeling kids get toward the end of the school year, when they know summer is coming? That excitement that starts to build right before you leave for a vacation? Yeah, that one.
That's the feeling I get when I realize it's time for Noonday onions to start appearing at East Texas farmer's markets surrounding the Tyler area. Never heard of 'em, you say? If you're an East Texas native, you most likely have, but for the rest of you, here's a little background. Noonday onions are arguably the sweetest onion on earth. That's the claim, at least. 10-15 and Vidalia onion lovers might disagree, but being a 10-15 onion fanatic, I am now among the converted in the Noonday onion camp.
To be considered a certified Noonday Onion, these babies have to have been grown within a 10-mile radius of Noonday, Texas. Noonday is a small town about 11 miles from Tyler, TX. At only about 2 square miles for the entire town, Noonday boasts sweet onions that pack some big flavor.
I know what you're thinking. Why is she getting all crazy excited about an onion? Well, you just don't know the half of it. I'm better than I used to be - I used to call connections in Tyler and pester them weekly with my calls. "Are the Noonday onions ready yet?" I had to know when to head that way to score some. More recently, there's been a farm stand in a small town close to my hometown, where I've been able to buy them when they're in season. I'd tell you where it is, but I don't want to. Not kidding.
Where can you buy some of these tasty onions? There are several growers in East Texas that produce the certified Noonday Onions. Noonday Onion Shed in Tyler will ship them by the peck, 1/4 bushel and 1/2 bushel. Shipping & handling is included in the price for all shipments within 600 miles. There have been some delays due to the recent heavy rains, but word on the street is that they are back up and running as of yesterday! Onion lovers rejoice!
I've used these gifts from God's bounty to make delicious jams, tasty side dishes, as well as soups and entrees. I'll feature them in my next post as one of the star ingredients in another summer recipe. See? You're getting all excited about onions now, too, aren't you?