There is nothing like a classic French Onion Soup. It has to be my favorite soup of all time. If you’re a cheese lover like I am, you will love it, too.
Classic French Onion Soup
Classic French Onion Soup is a delicious beef broth flavored with caramelized onions, and layered with toasted crusty bread and melted Swiss cheese.
As far as soups go, there is nothing better in the whole world. It’s the chocolate chip cookie of soups. Classic French Onion Soup is to French cuisine what lasagne is to Italian food. Your family and friends will love this soup. It makes the perfect appetizer. Or it can be a meal in and of itself.
Mai oui, leave it to the French, the Culinary Masters of the Universe.
French onion soup is so easy to make. Not only is it easy, but it’s cheap. It’s just onions, homemade broth, leftover bread (best to use the stale bread or ends) and cheese.
And classic French onion soup is so nutritious. Bone broth is rich in minerals, amino acids and gelatin which is fabulous for your skin, your digestive tract, and immunity. Cheese is full of vitamin A and vitamin K2.
Classic French Onion Soup Recipe
Onions, medium, yellow or white, organic (4)
Garlic clove (1)
Butter, grass-fed, organic, unsalted (1/3 cup)
Gruyère cheese or Swiss cheese, organic or imported (1 pound or 16 oz)
Leftover sourdough or baguette (6 slices)
White wine, dry, organic or imported (3/4 cup)
Beef or chicken stock, organic (2 quarts) — see my beef stock recipe and chicken stock recipe or you can make my pressure cooker bone broth
Port or Brandy (1/2 cup)
Thyme, fresh (a few sprigs, stems removed)
Bay leaf (1)
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1. With a chef’s knife, halve the onions, remove and discard the peels, and then slice the onions 1/4 inch thick. Set aside.
2. Peel and crush one clove of garlic. Set aside.
3. Melt the butter on medium heat in the Dutch oven or stockpot.
4. Add the onion slices and crushed garlic and sauté, stirring occasionally, for 30 minutes.
5. Grate the cheese in the food processor or by hand.
6. Toast the bread slices in the toaster or in the oven under the broiler.
7. Increase the heat to high and add the white wine.
8. Bring to a boil and reduce the wine by half, about 3-5 minutes.
9. Turn down the heat to medium-low, add the broth and simmer for 30-45 minutes.
10. Stir in the Port, bay leaf, thyme. Season with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste.
11. Ladle the soup into 6 ovenproof French onion soup bowls or ramekins.
12. Set the 6 slices of bread on top of each bowl of soup.
13. Sprinkle 1/3 cup of grated cheese onto each slice of bread.
14. Put the bowls on cookie sheets and set under the oven broiler for 3-5 minutes, until the cheese gets slightly brown and bubbly.
15. Let the soup bowls cool slightly before serving.
This recipe is modified from one of my favorite cookbooks, The Balthazar Cookbook. I have tried many of the recipes and everything in this cookbook comes out fantastic. I’ve been using these recipes in my kitchen for 25 years.
I recommend using homemade beef stock recipe or chicken stock or you can make my pressure cooker bone broth. The stuff you buy at the store is not as nutritious, but if you do need to rely on store-bought bone broth, buy the organic variety.
If you want to leave out the wine you can, just substitute more stock. It will not be as flavorful.
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