The Nonya cooking ingredient Bawang Merah or Shallot unlike onions where each plant normally forms a single bulb,
Bawang Merah or Shallot form
clusters of offsets, rather in the manner of garlic.
Bawang Merah or Shallots are extensively cultivated and much used in cookery, in addition to being pickled. Their flavor is perhaps more delicate than that of onions, perhaps more intense. Certainly it is distinctive. Finely sliced deep-fried shallots are used as a condiment in Asian cuisine. Bawang Merah or Shallot tend to be considerably more expensive than onions, especially in the United States
Bawang Merah or Shallot contain a substantial amount of liquid, somewhat sweet and replaceable with onions in rempah making. It thickens a rempah and proportionately increase its quantity will decrease the spicyness of the rempah. Peel before use.