French Onion Soup…Oh La La

French Onion Soup is the perfect solution for a cold day.  Caramelized onions, rich beef broth and lots of ooey gooey crusty cheese on top, what’s not to love?  When I see French Onion Soup on a restaurant menu, it is difficult for me to resist, but I’ve always been intimidated by the thought of making it at home.  I had been under the impression that this dish took hours to make, but it turns out that you can put together this delicious soup in less than an hour.

French Onion Soup
Adapted from a recipe by Tyler Florence

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 4 onions, sliced 1/4 inch wide
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped or pressed
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 3 fresh thyme sprigs
  • 2 large pinches of Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup red wine, about 1/2 bottle
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 5 cups beef broth
  • 1 baguette, sliced & toasted
  • 1/2 pound grated Fontina or Raclette (or Gruyere)

Melt the stick of butter in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onions, garlic, bay leaves, thyme, and salt and pepper.

Cook until the onions are very soft and caramelized, about 25-30 minutes.  After 30 minutes, mine looked like this.

Add the wine, bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer until the wine has evaporated and the onions are dry, about 7-10 minutes. Discard the bay leaves and thyme sprigs. Dust the onions with the flour and give them a stir. Turn the heat down to medium low and cook for 3-5 minutes, scraping the bottom of the pan as you do so.  This is to cook out the raw flour taste. Now add the beef broth, bring the soup back to a simmer, and cook for 10 minutes. Season, to taste, with salt and pepper.

When you’re ready to eat, preheat the broiler. Arrange the baguette slices on a baking sheet in a single layer. Sprinkle the toasted baguette slices with the cheese and broil until bubbly and perhaps just starting to brown, 1-3 minutes.

Ladle the soup into a bowl and float a cheese covered crouton on top.

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