RECIPE: French Onion Soup

Spring is here and soup season is drawing to a close but today was a bit cloudy and chilly and I developed a craving for some French Onion Soup.  I don't typically crave this outside of winter only because while it's not 'hearty' with lots of filling ingredients but because the flavors are so very rich.  Today though, today was a French Onion Soup day (not the day you are reading this mind you!).  This soup has such basic ingredients that I always have them on hand so it's a good soup to crave and not have to plan for!

Beef Broth - I use soup base and water
Worcestershire Sauce
Toasted Bread
Cheese - shredded (I prefer Swiss but mozzarella, white American, or even Monterrey Jack will be just a yummy)

Bread not pictured.
I'm making for just myself with the intention of leftovers, because common sense says that soup is always better the next day when the flavors have more time to marry together.  For me I'll use 1/4 of the onion pictured, very finely chopped.  (I'm not a fan of onion but love the flavor, by finely chopping it I never know it's there.  When I'm making this for a Mom I coarsely chop it so she can easily pick it out.)  I'll also use about 2 tablespoons of the butter.  Melt the butter in a sauce pan over medium heat and add the onion, cook until the onion turns translucent.

While the onion is cooking shred your cheese, unless you are using a pre-shredded cheese that is.  (For the record I was certain I had taken pictures of these steps but I didn't check them and totally headache inducing blur - sorry.)

Once the onion is ready add some flour.  Think like gravy for this step.  I used right about a tablespoon, stirring it in to make a light paste of the butter and onion.  Let it cook for a couple of minutes.  Trust me, nothing ruins a good soup like the awkward flavor of raw flour. 

Here's were this all becomes soup.  Add beef broth, I used 3 cups, and Worcestershire to taste.  I don't measure the Worcestershire, I literally do it to taste.  Shake some in, stir it in, taste.  Good?  Not quite right...add more until it is.  Simmer.  I set it at medium low for about 20 minutes just for flavor development.
 OK, if you are having a dinner party for some friends and serving this please go to the store and spring for a loaf of French Bread.  If you are just cooking it at home for yourself because it sounds good, sandwich bread it is.  Toast your bread.  French bread should be cut in slices that will fit in the toaster and then floated on the mug or bowl you are using.  I used sandwich bread, toasted, and then for convenience cut it into bit sized pieces and floated on my mug.  Top with shredded cheese.  Again, if you are rockin' the dinner party use crocks that are heat safe and pop in the broiler for a few moments until the cheese is melted and bubbly.  If you are me just waiting to crawl in your chair and devour, the heat of the soup or a quick zap in the microwave, while not as aesthetically pleasing, is just as delicious!

No comments