Tuesday, February 16, 2010

French Onion Soup

Here's my recipe for French Onion Soup. It's pretty traditional a la Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking. This is one of my favorite winter recipes. So simple but so delicious. Wonder how to get that nice melted cheese on top? You can put some toasted bread on the top of the soup, top with cheese and put under the broiler. I have soup bowls just for this purpose. But if you are not sure your bowls can handle this then sprinkle your cheese on thick slices of toasted bread and either bake them at 450 or broil them on a baking sheet until melted and lightly browned. (Watch closely because they can brown up pretty fast!) You can then just place these right on the top of the soup. Viola! This is a great way to handle the melted cheese component if you want to pack this up for lunches. Just heat your soup and then top with the toasted cheese bread, made ahead or toasted while the soup heats. Don't worry if the bread is really hard and crunchy... all the better to absorb the soup!

French Onion Soup
Serves 4 - 6 as a main course, 6 -8 as a starter

  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 mutant large onions, or 5 cups onion sliced (I had mutant large onions on hand)
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar
  • 3 tbsp flour
  • 1 tsp fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 4 cups beef stock + 4 cups water or 8 cups store bought fat free beef broth
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • French bread, cut in thick slices
  • Gruyere or Emmentaler Cheese, shredded
  1. Heat butter and oil over medium low heat in a large pot until the butter is melted
  2. Add onions, cover and cook over low heat for 30 minutes
  3. Add sugar and turn heat up to medium, stir often and cook until the onions are golden.
  4. Add flour and salt and cook 1 - 2 minutes
  5. Add stock through Worcestershire sauce, cover, reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes
  6. Salt and Pepper to taste
  7. Serve in bowls with toasted bread slices and cheese melted on top (see above note)

This meal isn't due until later in the Olympic menu but I do love to make my meals ahead when I have time. This one freezes beautifully. Don't pre-toast the bread, just slice it up and freeze it. It will be just the right texture for this dish when you are ready to eat it.

Back to the Games!

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