I had planted a sprouting shallot this past winter, and used their tender leaves for shallot chives to a very tasty effect in many dishes. I was convinced when I dug them up their bulbs would be shrunken and leathery and useless. But today my housemate was working on a dish that called for shallots. He had bought some at the farmers’ market but didn’t find them in our communal onion bowl. I had to admit that yes, I’d tried to use them for something, but they were already moldy, so I composted them. But then I remembered: Shallots! Growing! In a pot! So I ran downstairs and tugged them out of the dirt. There was more to them than I expected, and they smelled great, so we used them. It seemed to work out fine. I still have some left to put in a dish of my own, too.
The guideline for shallots in Britain is to plant them on the shortest day and pull them on the longest. I didn’t exactly keep that schedule, but then, I’m in Northern California. It worked out fine. I was pretty pleased.