Monday, October 29, 2012

Hurricane Sandy and French Onion Soup (my way)

To all my friends up and down the East Coast:
Be Safe
Be Smart
Be Hopeful

I lightened up the classic French Onion Soup traditionally made with beef broth and came up with this lighter, vegetarian version. Enjoy on a rainy, windy, cold day.

For your comparison (and in case you really, really love the traditional recipe, I have included both versions.

As always, Bon Appetite!

French Onion Soup Two Ways

Soupe A L’Oignon by Julia Child

1 ½ pounds yellow onion (about 5 cups) thinly sliced
3 Tb Butter
1 Tb Oil
1 tsp salt
¼ tsp sugar (helps to brown the onions)
3 Tb flour
2 quarts boiling brown stock
½ cup dry white wine or dry white vermouth
3 Tb cognac or brandy
Rounds of hard-toasted French bread (recipe follows)
1 to 2 cups grated Swiss or Parmesan cheese

Cook the onions slowly with the butter and oil in a covered soup pan for 15 minutes. Uncover and sprinkle with salt and sugar. Continue to cook over medium heat until the onions have turned an even, deep golden brown (about 30 to 40 minutes)
Sprinkle in the flour and stir for 3 minutes.
Off heat, blend in the boiling liquid. Add the wine, and season to taste. Simmer partially covered for 30 minutes to blend flavors.
Just before serving stir in the cognac or brandy. Pour into individual soup bowls or mugs, top with round of bread and cheese. Run under the broiler to melt and lightly brown cheese.

Onion Soup with Onions Three Ways: (my way)

1 large sweet onion (such as Vidalia) sliced thin
1 ½ pounds yellow onions, sliced thin
3 Tb Butter (divided)
1 Tb Oil (divided)
1/2 tsp sugar, divided (helps to brown the onions)
2 Tb flour
2 quarts boiling vegetable stock
½ cup dry white wine or dry white vermouth
1 cup shredded gruyere cheese
1 cup mozzarella cheese
Combine the cheeses and set aside.
Rounds of French bread

Slice the vidalia onion and set aside.
Slice the yellow onions and brown 1/2 the yellow onions in 1 1/2 tablespoons butter and 1/2 tablespoon oil following the instructions for Julia Child’s recipe.
In a separate saucepan sauté the rest of the yellow onions until soft and translucent.
Bring the vegetable stock to a high simmer and add the raw Vidalia onions. Maintain a high simmer. Add the sautéed yellow onions and continue to simmer.
Add the flour to the browned onions and cook and stir for 3 minutes. Add the browned onions to the vegetable stock. Add the wine and check seasoning. Continue to simmer (partially covered) for about 30 minutes to meld the flavors.
Ladle into individual mugs or bowls. Top with a round of bread, top with cheese mixture. Run under the broiler until cheese and hot, melted and lightly browned.

Croutes – (hard toasted French bread)
12 to 16 slices of French bread cut into ¾ to 1 inch slices
Olive oil
1 clove of garlic, sliced in half
Bake the rounds of bread in a 325 oven for 15 minutes. Lightly brush both sides of rounds with olive oil. Bake another 15 minutes or until rounds are light golden and dry. Rub the toasted rounds with the raw garlic cloves.

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