The James long keeping is an old English onion variety. It is thought to have originated in the 18th century in Surrey. It is named for the market-gardener who introduced the variety. According to journal from 1819, the James long keeping onion “is a well-known sort. It was sold by a market gardener of the name James several years ago in Lambeth Marsh.”
This onion is oval shaped and medium in size. It has brown skin. As its name suggests, the variety is an excellent keeper and stores well over the winter. Its flavor is rather strong and it is used as an aromatic ingredient in many dishes. It can be baked, grilled, fried, and roasted.
Until the 1990s, the James long keeping onion was a popular crop, but it fell out of favor and is no longer widely produced.