I love me my onions! Raw, sautéed, caramelized, yellow, Spanish, Bermuda, Vidalia, Texas Sweets, scallion, pearl, Crimini, Walla Walla...they can do no wrong. In fact, my wife and daughter gave me the Lithuanian nickname: "Ponas Svogūnas." ("Mr. Onion.") I answer to it proudly.
I also love me my vodka martinis! So if I'm going to buy a top shelf vodka like Stoli Elit or Belvedere, I'm not going to ruin it with cheap vermouth, especially that nasty stuff they use to brine cocktail onions that come in a jar that's been sitting on the liquor store shelf for about 10 years.
I looked at several do-it-yourself cocktail onion recipes, but I wasn't inspired to try any of them until I found a package of already peeled pearl onions at Whole Foods one day. I have to be honest...I just won't make them if I have to peel them.
Once that time-saving ingredient was in my possession, I took my own recipe to make pickled asparagus and decided to try that with the onions. Awesome results!
1 lb. pearl onions, peeled
1 cup white vinegar
1/2 cup cider vinegar
1 1/2 cups water
3/4 cup sugar (I like turbinado cane sugar)
1 teaspoon salt (per quart-sized Mason jar)
2 cloves garlic
Combine the white vinegar, apple cider vinegar, water, sugar, and peppercorns in a medium-sized saucepan. Bring to a boil, making sure the sugar dissolves completely.
In a quart-sized Mason jar, add the teaspoon of salt and garlic cloves.
Pour a little of the hot vinegar liquid in the jar to dissolve the salt. Add the onions to the jar, then fill the jar to the top with the vinegar liquid.
Cover the jar tightly and turn it upside-down a couple of times to mix everything together.
Let the jar cool to room temperature, then move it to the fridge. You can eat the onions as soon as the craving hits you, but they taste better if you give them a few days.