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Real Simple Cooking School

How to Slice an Onion

Onions are notorious for making people cry. The reason? Slicing into a bulb releases enzymes, which react with the air to form sulfuric acid that has an immediate tearing effect on our sensitive eyes. The best way to reduce tears is to handle the onion for the shortest time possible, using the quick, efficient slicing method shown in this video.
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WHAT YOU NEED

  • onions
  • glass bowl
  • cutting board
  • chef's knife
  1. Cut the top and bottom, then cut in half

    Slice off and discard the top and bottom half-inch of the onion with a chef’s knife. Rest the onion on one of its cut ends and slice in half.

  2. Peel the onion

    Peel off and discard the skin.

    Tip: It’s easier to take the skin off of cut halves then the whole onion.

  3. Slice half moons

    If a recipe calls for half moons, start at one of the flat ends (with onion half lying flat on the cutting board) and slice horizontally to create half moon-shaped pieces.

  4. Slice thin cuts

    For longer slices, turn onion, lay it flat on cutting board, and slice vertically through the onion on the long side. When you get close to the end, turn onion sideways for a better grip and continue slicing.

How would you do it? Share your tips and techniques

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