In an onion soup | india | Hindustan Times
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In an onion soup

india Updated: Dec 22, 2010 22:01 IST

Hindustan Times
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Why on earth are you crying?

Oh, these are tears of joy! Last month I bought 100 kg of onions at a wholesale price of Rs 20 per kg. I sold a 20 kg lot at Rs 75 a kg last week. The government's promised the price won't return to Rs 20-25 before March. I'm going to be rich!

You do know that hoarding is a crime...

Who says I'm hoarding? This is all for my kitchen. Making a special Christmas chicken dopiaza lunch. Want some?

No, thank you.

But why are you crying?

My tears are from those onions he's chopping there. When you slice onions, cells break down to produce an enzyme called allinase that converts amino acid sulphoxides into a sulphenic acid that, with the help of another enzyme, forms a gas called lachrymatory factor or LF. This activates sensory neurons in the eye and stings it. Tear glands produce water to flush the LF out. Thus the tears.

God! That sounds, er, complicated. And here I was simply planning to make some easy money and bring the government down.

Now you know why the ancient Egyptians worshipped the onion.

Only if Pakistan had refused to sell onions to us to reduce our price. What kind of enemies are they?!

India's the second largest producer of onions after China, Pakistan the fifth largest. All this could be Pakistan's doing, now come to think of it.

Do say: Peeling under the weather?

Don't say: Oops. Thought it was onions and not garlic that kept vampires away.