Shallots are a fantastic ingredient that make a great addition to so many recipes. You can chop them up finely in a sauce, or add them whole in bulk to all sorts of stews and casseroles where they will hold their shape quite nicely. The main problem I used to find with these little oniony delights, is that they’re an absolute pain to peel. The skins are so thin and fragile that they easily fragment and splinter. It can take a ridiculous amount of time to peel shallots in this way.
It’s not so bad if you only need one or two, but if you want to add a dozen to a casserole it’s another matter. In the past it’s even put me off using them altogether. I would throw in a chopped onion or two instead, just because they were easier to prepare.
If only I’d known how to peel shallots easily, because the answer is so simple once you know the secret. It turns an absolute pig of a job into a fuss-free bit of food preparation.
Just add hot water to peel shallots – a no-fuss method
Yes, it really is as simple as just adding water! Simply put your shallots in a bowl while you put the kettle on to boil. Cover them with piping hot water, and a few seconds later the shallots are ready to peel.
After they’ve been plunged in boiling water for just a few seconds, shallots slip easily from their skins. Just use a knife to top and tail the shallots, and the skin will peel off with little effort at all!
So next time you read a recipe that needs you to peel 15 shallots, don’t groan and turn the page – just remember to add hot water.