When Life Hands You Onions

Masculine hand holding dried onion bunch by the stalks
Yellow Onion Bunch - E Hanninen Stock Photo

I’ve decided to update my blogging plans beginning this month, rather than in February 2019, which was the next target date for another personal transition.

Due to ongoing changes with work and homelife needs, I need to keep my attention focused on my creative goals. Yet another twist in life has inserted itself into my schedule, and because I must address and integrate this twist, next February is not a reasonable time to resurrect on ongoing, publishing entity; you see, mid-February will mark two years after announcing that The Centrifugal Eye poetry journal was going on indefinite hiatus.

It’s become increasingly clear to me, though, after certain events and occasions of the past 18 months, that I need to keep working on my own writing goals a while longer, rather than turn away from them to reinvest in other folks’ goals. And I’m also increasing production time spent in my art studio.

If that were all, I’d wait until next year to announce my intentions. But as it turns out, I’m facing a 20% rent increase in 2019, so that means I am going to have even less time for outward-facing activities that aren’t income-producing.

Which brings me back to blogging.

I was going to terminate the blog in February. At least as a consistent conduit for discussion and self-help tips for writing and editing. It’s a time-consuming activity, even after cutting back to bi-monthly posting from weekly. I went ahead and put this decision forward to a few intimate readers and was pleasantly surprised, though, to hear back that my writing would be missed if I quit the blog. I gathered a few suggestions from readers, too, and garnered that if I chose to, I could adapt the Hanninen Freelance Editing blog to an occasional posting on writing — or whatever else I wanted — and my readers would still enjoy it.

Yeah, I know it must sound like I’m surprised. The reason for that is the current prevailing advice on business blogging: blog consistently/often, blog for several years to see financial (or other measured goal) results, and to stay focused on your basic messages. The notion is that nobody will care about you and what you post if you don’t make a career of blogging. Okay, that’s hyperbole, but yes, the concept is based on Internet statistics.

For me, what it’s going to boil down to is whether you still want to read what I have to say. Will you continue to visit the blog even if I post no more than a few times a year? Or if I talk about something I’m painting or crafting? Will you stop in for a recipe, or for a chuckle over an offbeat anecdote?

I was going to tell you all this stuff — ask you these questions — but then I came down with the worst head-cold I’ve gotten in 30 years (or maybe ever), and I figured I could segue into the schedule changes and random blogging concepts by sharing with you a recipe I concocted for a homeopathic antihistamine treatment.

Yeah, I had every other cold medicine at hand, but not what I needed most. You know — like when your nose won’t stop running for days on end (and nights, oh goddess!), and the nose itself becomes a plastic, hose-like, blistering, evacuation instrument that you would rip off your face if you were braver?

I think you’ll want this recipe so that you, too, will be able to combat such nose hosing. The resulting antidote is warming, lightly sweet, fragrant (if you can still smell), and it works quickly to ease your sinuses and clear your head for a while, even for as long as a dose of pharmaceutical antihistamine might last.

And how does it do that? By including most of the foods and herbs that have natural antihistamine properties. Ginger, citric acid/vitamin C, thyme, garlic, and onions are powerful cold-fighters.

Caramelized onions in a blue and white, floral, Chinese, porcelain bowl. Jar of ginger-infused honey in background.
"Caramelized Sweet Onions" - E Hanninen

Caramelized Sweet Onions (Plus!)

From the Kitchen of Eve Hanninen

Makes 4 Servings

2 or more tsp of olive oil

2.5–3 cups thinly-sliced sweet yellow onions

2 stalks fine-sliced green onions with bulbs

2–3 cloves garlic, minced

1 tsp thinly sliced ginger (optional)

1 tsp chopped fresh thyme (dried ok)

Salt and pepper to taste

1/3 cup orange juice, or other favorite fruit/vegetable juice, such as peach-mango

4 tsp balsamic vinegar

2 tsp Dijon mustard

2 tsp honey

Heat oil in large skillet over medium-high heat. Add yellow onion and white onion parts. Cook 2 minutes. Add green parts and ginger. Cook another minute. Reduce heat to medium. Add garlic, thyme, and a pinch of salt. Cook and stir 30 seconds. Add a splash of juice in pan. Stir. Turn heat to low and cover pan. Cook for 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, combine juice and balsamic in a small bowl. Reserve 2 tablespoons of liquid and add the rest of liquid to onion mixture when the 5 minutes are up. Bring heat up to medium and cook, uncovered, for 2-3 minutes until most of liquid has evaporated.

Whisk the mustard and honey in reserved liquid, then add to onions. Season with salt and pepper. Bring heat to low, cover pan, and let onions soften for another 5-10 minutes, as preferred.

Serve as a side dish with eggs, salmon, or pork roast, or mix into lentil or bean dishes, or create an onion soup by adding cups of your favorite stock broth.

(Serve and eat generously when you have a head cold or sinus allergies; most of the ingredients in this dish contain natural antihistamine properties.)

So, how about it? If you’re open to reading what I’d like to say about the things I spend time doing: writing, art, music, gardening, gaming, thinking, running a business, and much more, I’ll continue to write and post when I want to share. You won’t miss anything, even if my posting is sporadic, if you register as a member of my blog. It’s easy!

Enjoy the caramelized cold remedy, too.

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