Scientists have worked out why we cry when cutting onions. And in addition to this great news, we at Old Moore’s Almanac can now offer some solutions on how to stop the wailing when slicing your onions!
Common in cuisine all around the globe, onions are renowned for their ability to make us all look like cry-babies. Most humans have a very intense relationship with onions. It started when humans started digging them out of the ground 7000 years ago.
Before we had meteorologists, farmers used to predict how severe a winter would be by checking out their onions. Apparently, the thickness of an onion’s skin was an indicator as to how mild or how bad the upcoming winter would be. The thinner the skin, the milder the winter.
Ancient Egyptians even worshipped onions (they worshipped cats too, like we do, so they can’t be wrong). These ancient Egyptians believed the spherical shape and concentric circles inside onions symbolised eternity. We know this because archaeologists found onions in the tombs of pharaohs, with weird papyrus notes about how they were going to bring prosperity in the afterlife. Okay so we all love onion rings but they ain’t coming in our coffins.
In the Middle Ages, onions were an acceptable form of currency. And you could even give them as gifts. Now that’s something I would appreciate. Coming over to my house? Yes! Bring some onions with you!
In the video below, science boffins get to the bottom of the teary phenomenon and reveal exactly what chemical mechanisms triggers all the crying when cutting onions.
Here are some tips according to that vessel of all truths called THE INTERNET. Try them yourself, you could have great success.
How to Avoid Crying While Cutting Onions:
-Put the onions in a bowl of water and deskin them, the skin comes off and the water helps separate the skin. Then cut the onions under water.
-Wet your forearms under some water before cutting. The reason the released gas goes to your eyes, is because they contain moisture. Wetting your forearms causes the gas to redirect there, and you won’t feel the need to cry.
-Breathe through your mouth while cutting.
-Leave the root on to prevent “bleeding” of the onion.
-Use a very sharp knife. A blunt knife will also cause more cells to rupture and lead to more tears.
Happy onioning people!