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Sweet Pickled Onions


15th January, 2013
Raph Rashid of Beatbox Kitchen
Tuesday 15th January 2013
OK you guys – do not be deceived, this recipe may look super simple (and it is) but you cannot BELIEVE how delicious it is! I seriously could not stop sampling this one when we shot this story! Raph's sweet pickled red onions are so much sweeter and tastier than those translucent, eye-wateringly sharp little tackers from the fish and chip shop.  With the sweet 'n sour balance just right, they are the perfect partner for greasy, juicy, BBQ'd red meat (if you're into that kind of thing)... – Lucy

Raph Rashid’s Sweet Pickled Onions with a pile of tasty BBQ'd ribs.  Photo – Sean Fennessy.

As a kid I never really loved the fish and chip shop like all the other kids. Yeah, I scoffed down my fair share of minimum chips while rinsing my mouth out with a can of coke,  but I was never anticipating that huge white soggy bag filled to the brim with hot chips like all of my friends were.

The fish and chip experience for me all changed though (for the better!) this one time when I was waiting for my two potato cakes with soy sauce. I noticed a huge jar on the counter with little white balls and juice inside. What was this non fried item? As the guy next to me picked up his order he was handed a tiny brown bag, where he proceeded to pull out a ball and pop the whole thing in his mouth. With a slight wince and a bit of crunch he let out a big 'ahhhhh'. I have been all over the pickled onion since.

Photos – Sean Fennessy.


3 red onions
2 cups sugar
2.5 cups white vinegar
1 tablespoon salt


In a small pan combine the sugar, vinegar and salt and bring to a simmer, while making sure to stir the ingredients until all of the sugar and salt has dissolved. Once the ingredients start to simmer leave them on the heat for an additional five minutes before taking them off, and letting the juice cool.

Then peel and cut your onions in half then place in a sterilised sealable jar. It doesnt have to be a 'pickle' jar, but it does need to be air tight for instance an old jam or mason jar. Pour the liquid in and place in the fridge. These pickles will be ready to roll the next day.

When serving them I like to pair the onions with grilled short ribs, sausages, grilled mushrooms or anything that can use a little sweet and sour bite and lace with a splash of the juice.

THANKS RAPH for sharing your salsa secrets with us this month!  If you're in Melbourne, you can sample Raph's fast, flavourful food at either Beatbox Kitchen and Taco Truck, across Melbourne at various locations!

Raph gets smokey.  Photo – Sean Fennessy.

The Design Files acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the lands on which we work, the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin Nation. We pay our respects to Elders past and present.

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