Lauri Sturdivant is interested in how our friends and families gather around a table sharing meals and telling stories. In this column she shares recipes and stories from people in Siskiyou County, and restaurant reviews from her travels. Read full interviews, find recipes and reviews at TheBillPlate.com. If you’re interested in sponsoring this column in the Mt. Shasta Area Newspapers and the Siskiyou Daily News, call (530) 926-5214.

Cultures around the world use pickling as a way to preserve foods. The pickled pearl onions is an essential accompaniment to a Beefeater gin martini. Korean kimchi, German sauerkraut and the old fashion country store dill pickle barrels are probably the most well know. In the England pickled onions are often serve eaten with fish and chips and as condiment in a ploughman's lunch. My mother made pickled watermelon rind, my friends make bread and butter cucumber pickles and I make pickled onions.

Pickling onions is quick and easy to do. The result is a flavorful addition your friends and family will love. Pickled onions add a complex flavor to barbecue burgers, dogs, tacos, salads, and a cheese or crudité platter.

Her are my two favorite recipes. I encourage you to experiment with flavors you enjoy. The possibilities are endless. Use a jalapeno if you like the heat or a bay leaf for an earthier flavor. Use pearl onions, white yellow or red, whatever is in season.

Marinated White Vinegar Pickled Onions

3 small onions - peeled and sliced

White vinegar

2 tbsp Sugar white or brown

1 tsp Salt

2 tbsp Water

Multi colored peppercorns to taste

Place sliced onions in a 16 oz jar. I use the wide mouth, but use what you have on hand. Pour white vinegar over onions leaving room for 2 tbsp of water, add salt, pepper and sugar. Put the lid on and give it a good shake. Put in the refrigerator for 5-7 days and enjoy.

Pickled Red Onions

3 small red onions - peeled and sliced

1 1/2 cups apple cider vinegar

2 tbsp Sugar white or brown

1 tsp Salt

2 tbsp Water

Bring liquids, salt and sugar to a boil in a sauce pan over medium-high heat. Turn off the heat and put the raw onions into the pan. Let steep and cool on the stove. When cool place in 16 oz. jar and refrigerate for up to four weeks.