If I told you that as soon as it was approaching the end of September, I was dreaming of fireplaces, hot cocoa and comforting French onion soup, would you laugh at me? Seriously? I'm not joking. I know it's not even worth writing about, but to me it's important.
We had a slight cool front. Yep! A COOL front (not even a cold front). When I woke up today, it was actually BELOW 70! Are you understanding my excitement?!? It's been in the 90's for about 6 months here, so below 70 at any hour of the day is truly an exciting moment. And even before it hit below 70, I HAD to make this soup. I just had to. Because French onion soup (soupe à l'oignon, as they say in France)is one of my all-time favorite soups!
So now what if I told you that this is super easy to make? Would you give it a try? I know Panera makes one, because my daughter likes to meet her friends there sometimes and I sometimes will grab a bowl (because I often find myself craving this bowl of comfort) and let me tell you, nothing against Panera, but this beats it by a landslide! Seriously, so much better homemade! If you are trying to add more vegan foods to your diet, you could sub the cheese for a vegan version (I have tried Daiyan cheeses and they would work great with this recipe), and sub the butter for olive oil (or use margarine). And what about the beef broth? No biggie to make it with vegetable broth. You would also have to sub the Worcestshire sauce for a vegan one, because the regular one has anchovies in it.
You can add them to oven proof bowls like I did or even one bigger bowl. I did both! I had extra, so I did make one bigger oven proof bowl and I shared it with my neighbor, and by the way, I just remembered, I need to get back my favorite red bowl! I was debating on making this soup again and also this one, but decided to go with my craving!!
some recipe notes:
The most time consuming part of this recipe is caramelizing the onions. Really, it's not a big deal to caramelize onions! Just cook them slowly and stir them occasionally and you will have gorgeous onions ready for the rest of your ingredients. As for the alcohol you add, be creative. I mention sherry in this recipe, you could add your favorite white wine or even Vermouth. You could skip it all together if you do not care for alcohol. If you are trying to add more vegan foods to your diet, you could sub the cheese for a vegan version (I have tried Daiyan cheeses and they would work great with this recipe), and sub the butter for olive oil (or use margarine). And what about the beef broth? No biggie to make it with vegetable broth. You would also have to sub the Worcestshire sauce for a vegan one, because the regular one has anchovies in it.
Adapted from Martha Stewart
French Onion Soup
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: approx 30 mintues
Ingredients (4 servings)
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 pounds yellow onions, sliced 1/4-inch into half circles
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup dry sherry (or your favorite white wine will work just fine!)
- 3 cups beef broth
- 1 Tablespoon Worcestshire sauce
- 2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme (or 3/4 tsp dry)
- salt and freshly ground pepper, according to your taste
- 1 small French baguette, sliced crosswise into 1/2-inch pieces
- 8 ounces Gruyere cheese, grated on the large holes of a box grater (about 3 cups)
Melt butter in a large Dutch oven or heavy pot on medium-low heat. Add onions and sprinkle the sugar over it. Stir occasionally and cook until tender and golden and begin to caramelize (takes about 20-25 minutes until golden).
Sprinkle flour over onions, and stir to coat.
Add sherry, stock, Worcestshire sauce, thyme, and bring to a simmer. Cook, partially covered, for about 30 minutes, to allow the flavors to combine. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Meanwhile, lightly toast bread under a broiler; set aside. Ladle hot soup into six ovenproof bowls. Arrange the bowls on a baking pan.
Place 1 or 2 slices of toasted bread over each bowl of soup.
Sprinkle 1/2 cup grated cheese over bread in each bowl, and place under the broiler until cheese is melted and crusty brown around the edges. Watch carefully that bread doesn't burn. Serve immediately.