Saturday, January 1, 2011

French Onion Soup

Pure comfort food...that's exactly what this soup is to me!  It's got the perfect top, full of ooey gooey cheese and crusty bread.  Now, the process is not quick, but it's definitely easy.  Once you get the onions in the pot, you can pretty much leave them for a while and then come back to wonderfully caramelized goodness!  I suppose you can probably use any type of onion, but I chose the sweet onions.  Now you'll notice I got a little too bread happy and shoved 2 pieces of bread in...I like bread and cheese!  I'm sure your bread rounds will look much nicer than mine!
A nice caesar salad goes really well with this soup.

FRENCH ONION SOUP {my version of Alton Brown}
{serves 4}


  • 5 sweet onions {vidalia}
  • 2 Tbsp. butter
  • kosher salt
  • 2 Tbsp. sherry
  • 1 Cup red wine
  • 2 Cups beef broth
  • 2 Cups chicken broth
  • thyme sprigs and Bay Leaf
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 loaf crusty french or sourdough baguette
  • 1/2 cup gruyere cheese, shredded
 Slice onions in half lengthwise then finely slice again into half moons.  Melt butter in pot over medium-low heat; add a layer of onions and sprinkle with a little salt.  Continue layering onions and salt until all onions are in the pot.  Do not stir onions until they have all sweated down, about 15-20 minutes.  After that stir occasionally until all onions are a dark caramelized color, which should take about 45 minutes to an hour.  At this point I left them on the stove top and came back ever now and then to stir.  Don't worry about burning.  Add the sherry and wine and cook down until most liquid has absorbed.  Add beef broth, chicken broth, a couple thyme sprigs and a bay leaf.  Bring to slight boil, reduce heat to simmer; about 15-20 minutes.  
Meanwhile, heat your broiler and get out a baking sheet. Shred the cheese and cut bread rounds to fit the oven-safe soup bowls or ramekins you will be using.  Toast bread rounds and set aside.  Season soup with more salt and freshly ground pepper as desired.  Don't forget to remove the thyme sprigs and bay leaf!!  Ladle soup into the oven-safe bowls, float the toasted bread rounds on top, and cover those suckers with LOTS of cheese!  Place bowls on the baking sheet and put under broiler and broil until cheese is bubbly and melted; about 5 minutes.  Watch carefully!!

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