I dug the shallots up a while ago, and the bed that they and the garlic occupied, has been dug back over and sown with more dwarf beans which I hope will see me through the autumn months and maybe into winter with freezer supplies.
The shallots range from really tiny through to the size of a small onion. The bigger ones have been hung up in bunches (4 bunches altogether are adding a fragrant aroma to my kitchen) and the smaller ones have filled a small basket for the time being.
I’m planning to pickle as many of these as I can fit into the largest jam jar I have, and they should be ready for snacking on around Christmas time.
Otherwise, I use them pretty much as you would onions, they add a stronger kick than the bigger onions do, and they are great left whole and added to slow cooked winter casseroles. I do sometime get lazy about the fiddliness of peeling them, but they are worth the effort.
At the weekend I made an onion and salmon tart to eat cold with salad. Two large onions (freshly harvested from the plot) were sweated in butter (while I sweated alongside them), with a couple of the biggest shallots and a whole head of elephant garlic that hadn’t split into cloves and was like a big (but mild) garlicky onion. These were topped with a tin of salmon, a few slices of courgette, and a handful of chopped chives. All filled with eggs and cream and baked to perfection (well, near enough, luckily I don’t have Paul Hollywood nearby to check whether I have a soggy bottom!)
I’ll update you on the pickling once I get around to it.