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liuzhou

Half an Onion and Other Absurdities

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On 7/17/2020 at 10:44 AM, liuzhou said:

 

 

That is the problem. The recipe writer knows what they mean by half an onion but fails to convey that information to the reader.

 

In my books, when I call for half an onion, or a small onion, I give a volume amount as well. So the ingredient list will read "1/2 small onion, chopped (about 1/4 cup)". I figure if I give both, then the reader will know both what to start with (half a small onion) and what they want to end up with (1/4 cup of chopped onions). I use weights when I think it will make sense to my readers, as in "1/2 pound red potatoes," but my editors almost always want an equivalent, in this case, the number of potatoes. I don't think that's very useful, but the editors make the rules, so I follow them.

 

One thing to keep in mind is that it's not always the recipe writer who makes these decisions -- I'd love to use more weights in my recipes, but my editors have a specific audience in mind, and they don't think their readers will have a kitchen scale. So I have to deal with that, or not write for them.

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On 7/24/2020 at 3:08 PM, JAZ said:

 

In my books, when I call for half an onion, or a small onion, I give a volume amount as well. So the ingredient list will read "1/2 small onion, chopped (about 1/4 cup)". I figure if I give both, then the reader will know both what to start with (half a small onion) and what they want to end up with (1/4 cup of chopped onions). I use weights when I think it will make sense to my readers, as in "1/2 pound red potatoes," but my editors almost always want an equivalent, in this case, the number of potatoes. I don't think that's very useful, but the editors make the rules, so I follow them.

 

One thing to keep in mind is that it's not always the recipe writer who makes these decisions -- I'd love to use more weights in my recipes, but my editors have a specific audience in mind, and they don't think their readers will have a kitchen scale. So I have to deal with that, or not write for them.

If you will tell us who/where to write, I'm betting ALL of eGullet will pen a note begging for at least both volume measures and weights!  😁

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