French Onion Soup.
Hearty, warming and packed with soft carmelized onions and flavorful broth. Topped with crusty whole grain toast and lots of bubbly, melted cheese. What’s not to love?
French Onion Soup reminds me of bundling up on cold, snowy, windy winters days in Boston and heading to a cozy local pub for a beer and a hearty bowl of this soup. But, it’s even better made at home and savored next to a cracklin’ fire with a glass of wine. And, it’s pretty easy to make, you just need to babysit and stir the onions a bit as they carmelize.
The main flavor components in this French Onion Soup are carmelized onions (lots!), red wine, chicken stock and thyme. Atop the soup are toasted whole grain baguette slices. And, for the best part of the soup, the melted cheese. You can use Swiss, Gruyère or any cheese you prefer that melts well. We used my favorite cheddar, Alpine Cheddar from Cabot, which is a nutty and smooth cheddar with hints of Swiss and Parmesan. That cheese is really good, so buy an extra bar for slicing and eating.
Chicken and vegetable stocks are staples we always have in our pantry. We use them for adding flavor to rice, steamed cauliflower and, of course, for soups and stews. I am not one to make my own chicken stock or broth, I find it too time consuming and I don’t like dealing with the bones.
Make this French Onion Soup for the cold, snowy, wintry nights ahead. Oh, and this soup is one of those recipes that’s better the second or third day, so do make a double batch.
Here’s how to make it:
- • 2 Tbsp olive oil
- • 4 large sweet white onions, thinly sliced
- • 4 large red onion, thinly sliced
- • ½ tsp sugar
- • 1/8 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- • 1/8 tsp salt
- • 4 garlic cloves, minced
- • 1 cup red wine, Cabernet Sauvignon
- • 32 oz box chicken stock
- • 2 Tbsp fresh thyme, chopped
- • 1 bay leaf
- • 1 whole grain baguette, sliced
- • 1 6 oz Alpine Cheddar Cheese bar, shredded
- Heat olive oil over medium heat in a large soup pot. Add white and red onions, sugar, pepper and salt to the pot and stir. Sauté 30 minutes, stirring every few minutes until the onions and lightly browned and are losing their shape. Add garlic and sauté another 2 minutes. Add red wine, stirring to scrape off the brown bits in the pot. Add chicken broth, thyme and bay leaf and stir. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 30 minutes. Meanwhile toast baguette slices. Set aside. Remove soup from heat and spoon out bay leaf. Preheat broiler. Ladle soup into oven safe serving bowls. Place bowls on a baking sheet. Top each bowl with bread slices and shredded cheese (amount will depend on the size of the bowl – ours held 3 slices of bread and about an ounce of cheese per bowl). Broil until cheese is melted and begins to bubble, a few minutes. Sprinkle with fresh chopped thyme, if desired. Serve.