(Fake) Pink Pickled Onions

It’s the beginning of birthday season around my house, with my partner turning 4 decades old! To celebrate him, I am making his favorite cuisine – Mexican. We are hosting a taco bar party for several dozen folks, so I am making BIG batches of things: fermented jalapenos, hot sauce, giant shoulders of pork carnitas, and pink pickled onions as one of the garnishes.

I had sweet Texas onions on hand, but I wanted them to be pink (usually you start with red onions, so they provide their own dye). I added a sliced beet to the mix, and got a brilliant color.

Pink Pickled Onions

Here is the recipe for a smaller sized batch:

1/2 cups apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
1 teaspoon coriander seeds
5 black peppercorns
1 bay leaf
1 red onion, thinly sliced (or a white onion with a slice of red beet!)

Mix all ingredients in a small non-reactive (basically not aluminum) sauce pan over low heat until the salt and sugar are dissolved. Pack the sliced onion into a glass jar and pour the warm pickling liquid over, pushing down the onion to submerge. Allow the onions to pickle for a day or two, or for up to a month. They are beautiful on a salad, or roasted with green beans for a quick side. The pickling liquid makes a nice dressing.

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