I just made the most delicious French onion soup. It was very easy, so simple that I could be tempted to make a pot every week. There’s just everything to love about this scrumptious classic soup. I’m certain that it’s the divine combination of sweet caramelized onions, the rich aromatic broth, and the Swiss cheese. Oh, let’s talk about the cheese. Gruyère is the most delicious mild and smooth cheese, (a bit pricy, but well worth every penny!) Served-up all melted in the middle with crunchy bits around the bowl…
You’ll love this soup!
From Wikipedia; “Onion soups have been popular at least as far back as Roman times. They were, throughout history, seen as food for poor people, as onions were plentiful and easy to grow. The modern version of this soup originates in France in the 18 century,made from beef broth, and caramelized onions. It is often finished by being placed under a broiler in a ramekin traditionally with croutons and gruyère melted on top. The crouton on top is reminiscent of ancient soups (see History of Soup).”
- 10 medium yellow onions (about 4 1/2 pounds), thinly sliced.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- Coarse salt and ground pepper
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme (optional)
- 3 cloves of garlic, minced (optional)
- 3 cans (14 1/2 ounces each) reduced-sodium chicken or beef broth.
- 3/4 cup dry red wine cognac or sherry
For Cheese Toast (croutons)
- 4-6 slices toasted GF, multi-grain or French bread
- 4-6 ounces thickly sliced Swiss cheese or Gruyère
- In a large soup pot, toss together onions, oil, butter, sugar, thyme, 1/2 teaspoon sea salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Cook on medium to low heat, uncovered; stirring every 30 minutes or so, until onions are golden brown and caramelized, 1 1/2 to 2 hours.
- Deglaze the pan with the booze, then stir in broth and 4-5 cups water. Bring to a boil; reduce heat to a simmer. Cook until liquid has darkened, and simmer for about 30 minutes.
- To make the cheese toast: Heat broiler. Place sliced bread on a baking sheet; top with cheese. Broil until the cheese is bubbly and golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes. We sometimes skip this step and place the toasted cheese topped bread on top of the soup filled bowl and broil (see photos). Be sure to use oven-proof bowls.
- Or, ladle into bowls; topping each with two slices of pre-broiled cheese toast.