Winter in New England, it’s not over until it’s over. With spring less than a week away, a blizzard is upon us. Why couldn’t this have happened two months ago? Oh well… Let’s make the most of it shall we! French onion soup for everyone! Wheeee!
My love for French onion soup runs deep. I feel romantic about this soup. There are just so many aspects to love, but basically it is simple and delicious. I always try to keep the ingredients on hand in-case we don’t have anything in the fridge for dinner. This isn’t hard since the ingredients are mostly pantry items and I must say that I make this soup often. (Essentially all the time)
It is perfect for a cozy casual night or a special evening. It’s great for a crowd. It’s covered with bread and melted cheese. Do I really need to do a hard sell on this one? Ok: 1) It is snowing. 2) It’s cold. 3) You only have onions in the house. 4) You want to impress your date with little effort. 5) You love cheese. (Is this enough?) You will love it. Enjoy-
P.S. This is Julia Child’s recipe with some slight changes.
French Onion Soup
1 ½ lbs or about 5 cups yellow onions, sliced
3 Tablespoons butter
1 Tablespoons oil
¼ Teaspoons sugar
3 Tablespoons flour
2 quarts beef stock
½ cup white wine (or dry vermouth)
rounds of toasted baguette or other dense bread
1 to 2 cups grated swiss
salt and pepper to taste
bay leaf (optional)
Slice bread or baguette. Make sure you use dense bread or the bread will fall apart too easily in the soup.
Dry the bread either by putting it on a baking sheet in a 325 degree oven for thirty minutes or just in a toaster oven. You want to dry the bread more than toast it.
Prep the bread while you are cooking the onions.
When the bread is done, you can rub some garlic on it. (If you feel like it)
Prep onions by cutting in half and peeling.
Thinly slice onions.
Add butter and oil to a heavy bottomed saucepan. (A Dutch oven is perfect.)
Add onions to butter and oil and stir.
Cover the pot and set heat to low.
Cook slowly for about 15 minutes.
Onions should start to give up some moisture now.
Uncover and raise heat to medium.
Stir in sugar.
Cook onions for 30-40 minutes stirring frequently.
Onions should take on a deep golden brown. Make sure you cook the onions so they all have a nice even colour.
Add flour and stir into onions.
Cook flour for about 3 minutes.
Add beef stock and wine.
(Add a bay leaf and some thyme if desired)
Simmer soup for about 30-40 minutes.
Skim off any fat that you want and adjust seasoning.
Set soup aside. When you are ready to fill the bowls, make sure soup is hot.
Turn on broiler.
Set bowls on baking sheet. (please make sure your bowls can go in the oven)
Ladle soup almost to brim.
Top soups with toast.
Then top toast with cheese. It is up to you how much cheese you want.
Put baking sheet under broiler and broil cheese until bubbly and brown.
Serve immediately and enjoy by crackling fire.