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French Onion Soup

Posted on December 19, 2011.


Onion based soups have been around since the time of the Romans, but the most popular all onion soups were created in France in the 18th century. The typical French onion soup uses beef broth with caramelized onions and is finished under a broiler with croutons and gruyre melted on top. I prefer to substitute the beef broth with a lighter chicken stock that does not compete with the rich flavor created by the caramelized onions. Caramelization can be accomplished within half an hour, but many chefs allow for hours of cooking to bring out the complex flavors of the onions´ sugars. I speed this process up by adding natural sugar to the onions.


4 large red onions, sliced thin
4 medium yellow onions, sliced thin
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons Italian parsley, chopped
2 bay leaves
8 cups chicken stock
1/2 cup dry white wine
12 slices baguette, 1/4 inch thick
1/4 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon thyme
1/2 cup shredded Gruyere cheese
3 tablespoons olive oil


In large pot on medium heat, add oil and brown onions for 10 minutes. Stir in sugar and cook onions until caramelized (about 30 minutes).

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Add the stock, garlic, thyme, bay leaf and wine to pot and bring to boil, then reduce to simmer for about 45 minutes. Salt and pepper to taste.

Using a brush, lightly coat baguette slices with olive oil, then toast in oven (about 5 minutes) and remove.

Set oven to broil.

Remove bay leaves from broth and ladle soup into oven-ready bowls. Place baguette slices on top, sprinkle with heavy layer of cheese.

Set bowls on baking pan under broiler about 4 inches from the heat source. Cook until cheese melts and forms a light brown crust (about 3-4 minutes).

Garnish with a light sprinkle of parsley and serve.


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Posted By: Chief Foodie Officer