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1. pungent bulb
2. bulbous plant having hollow leaves cultivated worldwide for its rounded edible bulb
3. edible bulb of an onion plant

Onions may be eaten raw, broiled, boiled, baked, creamed, steamed, fried, french fried and pickled. They are used in soups and stews and combination with vegetables and meats.

Nutritive value
Onion is described as the dynamite of natural foods. Compared with other fresh vegetables, it is relatively high in food value, moderate in protein content and rich in calcium and riboflavin. An analysis of a mature onion shows it to contain moisture, protein, fat, fibre, minerals and carbohydrates. Its mineral and vitamin contents are calcium, phosphorous, iron, carotene, thiamine, riboflavin and niacin.
Energy value: 51 calories per 100 gms.
The odour in onion is due to organic sulphur copounds and is produced only when the tissues are cut or injured by enzyme action on the water-soluble amino acid. Heat or freeze-drying prevents the enzyme action, so that cooking produces a different odour, flavour and pungency.

Onions has many uses. It can be eaten raw or cooked. Onion oil, produced by steam distillation, is used to a limited extent for flavouring foods.

While peeling an onion, the release of volatile oil containing allypropyl sulphide brings tears to the eyes. This can be avoided by peeling it under running water or dipping the onion in hot water for a minute.