You may just dread needing to cut onions for dinner; after all, the process often brings on stinging eyes and a lot of tears. Fortunately, though, there may be a solution to this common problem. Indeed, famous YouTube chef Jack Scalfani has seemingly revealed a secret method for chopping the vegetables without ending up in floods.
And the reason human beings cry when cutting onions is a fascinating one, linked to how our eyes protect themselves from irritants. In essence, it’s a reaction called reflex tears, which takes place when there’s something nearby that has the potential to damage our eyes – such as smoke, for example.
But why do onions in particular have this effect on us? Well, it’s partly down to how the vegetables grow in the first place. Onions take up sulfur from the soil; then, as the plants develop, the sulfur is broken down into a collection of molecules known as amino acid sulfoxides.