Thursday, January 12, 2012

French Onion Soup

Here's a dish to warm the cockles of your heart on a cold winter day.  Make it one Sunday afternoon and then reheat and top it later in the week for a simple weeknight supper.

French Onion Soup
Makes 4-6 servings.

6 large yellow onions (the sweeter the better), peeled and thinly sliced.
3 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon of sugar
2 cloves garlic, minced
8 cups beef stock
1/2 cup dry white wine (or go especially French and use dry vermouth)
1 bay leaf
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
Salt and pepper

To top:  thinly sliced French bread, lightly toasted and grated or sliced Swiss cheese (Gruyere if possible)
In a large saucepan, sauté the onions in the olive oil on medium high heat until well browned, but not burned, about 30-40 minutes (or longer). Add the sugar about 10 minutes into the process to help with the caramelization.

Add garlic and sauté for 1 minute. Add the stock, wine, bay leaf, and thyme. Cover partially and simmer about 30 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper and discard the bay leaf.

Ladle into individual oven=proof soup bowls or ramekins.  Top with the toasted bread and cheese. Put under the broiler, watching carefully, until the cheese bubble and browns slightly.

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