How to prep pearl onions
Prepping pearl onions requires a bit of effort, but will make a difference in soups and stews or as a side dish when roasted, braised or glazed.
Start by bringing a saucepan of water to a boil (for blanching the onions). Next, prepare an ice bath -- just a large bowl with a quart of water and 1 cup of ice cubes -- that you will use to cool down the onions after blanching.
Cut off the root end of each pearl onion -- don't cut too much off, maybe 1/16 of an inch. Blanching will loosen the skins and they'll slip off easily.
Blanch the pearl onions by boiling them in water for 1 to 2 minutes until their skins look bubbly and translucent.
With a slotted spoon, remove them to the ice bath so that they stop cooking and become cool enough to peel.
Let them cool for 5 minutes in the ice bath, or until they're cool enough to handle.
Now just slip their skins off.
Since you've already removed the root, the skins will be loose and easy to peel off.