This Sweet Onion Relish is from the wonderful So Easy to Preserve put out by the University of Georgia.
The recipe calls for Vidalia Onions, the pride of Georgia, so if you have access to a lot of them cheaply where you are, you may want to use those.
For this photo session, we used sweet red onions as there was a bumper crop of them at the time that needed using up.
This is a recipe that you can make in the winter if you see large bags of onions go on sale and the canning bug bites you.
We also cut the recipe in half.
See also: Onion Relish.
Jar size choices: Quarter-litre (1/2 US pint / 250 ml / 8 oz) OR half-litre (US pint / 500 ml / 16 oz)
Processing method: Water bath or steam canning
Yield: 4 x half-litre (US pint) jars
Headspace: 2 cm (1/2 inch)
Processing time: 10 minutes
Yield: 4 x half-litre jars
Serving size: 2 tablespoons
Fat: 0 g
- 2.25 kg ground onion (3 litres / 3 quarts / 5 lbs). Measurements after peeling and grinding)
- 4 tablespoons picking salt OR 2 tablespoons salt sub
- 2 teaspoons pickling spice
- 500 ml apple cider vinegar 5% or higher (2 cups / 16 oz)
- ½ teaspoon turmeric
- 2 tablespoons chopped pimento (20 g)
- 1 1/ 2 tablespoons additional salt sub (if not using salt)
- 500 g white sugar (2¼ cups / 18 oz) OR 2 teaspoons liquid stevia
- Peel onions.
- Pass through a grinder such as shown below to obtain amount needed above.
- Mix with salt OR first amount of salt sub and let stand 30 to 60 minutes or overnight.
- Squeeze excess water from onion and discard it.
- Put onion in a large pot.
- Tie pickling spice in a cheesecloth and add to pot.
- Add all remaining ingredients to pot.
- Bring to a boil, then let simmer uncovered until thick -- about 30 minutes. Stir frequently to prevent burning.
- Remove and discard spice bag.
- Ladle hot relish into heated jars, leaving 2 cm (1/2 inch) headspace.
- Debubble, adjust headspace.
- Wipe jar rims.
- Put lids on.
- Process in a water bath or steam canner.
- Process jars for 10 minutes; increase time as needed for your altitude.
How to water bath process.
How to steam can.
When water-bath canning or steam canning, you must adjust the processing time for your altitude.
For salt substitute, Herbamare Sodium-Free was used as it is non-bitter and non-clouding.
For stevia, Better Stevia liquid stevia was the stevia used as it is non-bitter, easy to use, doesn’t increase density and impacts neither pH nor nutrition.
- You’ll want to start with about 2 1/2 to 3 kg (6 to 7 lbs) of onions before prep.
- Vidalia Onion is not a specific variety of onion (legally, 24 different varieties of onions can be sold as Vidalias). It’s a marketing term applied to sweet onions grown in 20 counties of south-east Georgia which have the right soil to produce sweeter onions. If you are in Washington State, or Oregon, you might wish to try your local Walla Walla onions.
- “Grinding an onion” might seem like a curious operation to perform. What they mean is they passed it through a meat grinder attachment such as the one shown below. “For recipe development, vegetables were ground using a coarse blade stand mixer attachment.”1
- Vidalia Onion Relish. In: Andress, Elizabeth L. and Judy A. Harrison. So Easy to Preserve. University of Georgia Cooperative Extension. Bulletin 989. Sixth Edition. 2014. Page 167.
- Cut recipe in half.
Per 2 tablespoons
- 45 calories, 440 mg sodium
Salt and sugar-free
Per 2 tablespoons
- 16 calories, 2 mg sodium
Christian, Kasey A. et al. Preserving Food: Canning Relishes. University of Georgia Extension. FDNS-E-43-18. April 2015. Page 6. ↩