Shallot oil (葱头油) is commonly used in Chinese cooking. My Mom cooks this in her wok and each time she makes this, it is easily over a kg. Imagine the peeling and slicing! She makes bottles after bottles to give her children, and I'm definitley one lucky child. I didn't know it was such a tedious chore until I try to DIY at home. Slicing of the shallot makes me tear like nobody's business. I googled to find some tear-free methods/tips and these are what I've gathered:
- Place the shallots in the fridge or freezer for 30 minutes before chopping
- Peel the shallots under running water
- Use a wet chopping board and a sharp knife.
To prevent burning the shallot, stop cooking when the shallots turn slightly golden brown. They were then left to stand for about 1 - 2 mins to cook on its own.
Do not discard the oil used to fry the shallot. You can use the oil for cooking (stir fry veggie or fried rice or anything you can think of) or use it to fragrant a dish (congee/noodle soup).
Or simply drizze over some blanch vegetables with oyster sauce, yum!
I like to slice them thicker because we (mainly the kids) eat it like a snack. We like to bite into it to feel the crisp ;-)
Fried Shallot Oil (葱头油)
15 - 20 Shallot/small onions
Cooking Oil (I use sunflower/corn oil)
- Peel the outer skin of the shallots and sliced it thinly.
- Put the sliced shallot in a microwaveable bowl.
- Add enough oil to cover the shallot.
- Cook on High for 4 - 5 minutes. Give it a stir and continue to cook for another 2 mins. Reduce to Medium Low and cook for a further 2 - 3 mins, stirring in between.
- Stop when the shallot turns slightly golden in colour. Do not cook till brown as the hot oil will continue to cook the shallot, resulting in very dark/burnt shallot.
- Let it stand for 1 - 2 mins to allow it to cook further and carefully remove the bowl from microwave.
- Drain fried shallot and leave to cool completely (do not leave them soaking in the oil as the shallot will turn soft). Store in glass container and keep it in the fridge. Do the same for the shallot oil.
Cooking time depends on your microwave and the amount of shallots used. I'm using Sharp R888.