Humble to Hero, Showcasing Australian Onions
Created to showcase the use of red, white, and brown onions in Australian kitchens, Australian Onions partnered with Straight to the source to demonstrate culinary creativity, combining chefs from some of Melbourne’s best venues, with the Humble Hero, the Onion.
Competing against Kay-Lene Tan (Tonka restaurant), Brendan Katich (nomad), Elijah Holland (LOTI St Kilda), and Telina Menzies (Australian Venue Co.) was the MCG’s own Rhys Blackley.
With 7 minutes on stage to plate up and discuss the inspiration behind the dish, contestants were required to create a dish, sweet or savoury. Judged in two parts, an audience vote for presentation and visual presence on the plate, and a taste score from our judges, the most important criteria was, to hero the onion.
Choosing to showcase the versatility of Onions, Rhys created a dish of whole roasted onion, filled with braised Ox tail and smoked bone marrow sauce, with a base of onion and thyme puree, a salad of pickled onion rings, fried onion rings, onion flowers and spring onions.
“I love cooking with onions, once they are cooked, they just transform completely, and become soft, and sweet. Pickled onions just add a whole new element to dishes, and raw onion washed with cold water added to a salad and dressed with citrus is fantastic.”
“To Create my dish, I added thyme, garlic, olive oil and salt, to a brown onion, roasted for at least an hour, until really soft and sweet, before scooping out the center to make the puree for the base of the plate.”
Onions contain natural sulfoxide compounds which directly influence their unique flavour and dour, in the same way as garlic, truffle, cabbage, swede, cauliflower, broccoli, globe artichoke, asparagus and egg. Onions are also a natural source of folate, vitamin C and antioxidants and have many health benefits.
To discover more, head to Australian Onions