Shallot is best said with the emphasis on the second syllable in a hammed up English accent.
At half the size and twice the price of an onion, such affectation helps their cause.
But the petite allium with the pretty purple tint deserves more merit than mockery.
Milder in flavor than both onions and garlic, they become one with their milieu in a way that their biting brethren can't always manage.
They are also chic enough to trot across the culinary globe:
Grated into strained yogurt for dipping kebabs in Iran.
Finely minced and combined with Dijon mustard, sherry vinegar, olive oil, and herbs in France's hallmark vinaigrette.
Softened in olive oil as the aromatic base for risotto in Italy.
Pickled in vinegar and served as a curry condiment in India.
Cut into rings, dusted with flour, and shallow-fried for a well-bred version of the onion straws we all love--but are loath to admit--here in America.
Let them keep their accent--like Tennyson's Lady of Shalott. And Madonna.