Monday, January 28, 2013

Soupe A L'Oignon (Week 5 - Onion Soup)

The Hubster and I on the top of the Arc de Triomphe
Something about this cold weather reminded me of the chilly afternoon (in June) in Paris where hubby and I hid away in a little bistro to warm up and avoid the storm. Although it seemed unbelievably touristy at the time, I had to have a bowl of that wonderful onion soup that landed on the table next to me.  As it may have screamed "Clark and Ellen Griswald Type Tourists", it was warm, silky rich and sinfully packed with liberal amounts of butter and cheese.  Be still my beating foodie heart!

With that, I dug out my "Mastering the Art of French Cooking" and ....voila!

5 cups of thinly sliced yellow onions (I had red but it still turned out fine)
3 tablespoons of butter
1 tablespoon of oil
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon of sugar (helps the onions brown)
3 tablespoons of flour
2 quarts of brown stock ( I used home made veal stock)
1/2 cup dry vermouth
3 tablespoons cognac
Toasts (go with good quality French bread with texture and depth of flavor - LaBrea sourdough!)
Shredded Swiss cheese

In a heavy pan, sweat the onions (15 minutes) in the butter and oil (covered). Uncover and continue to cook until golden brown. Sprinkle on the salt and sugar. Stir and continue till evenly brown. Sprinkle with flour and stir in to paste. Add the liquids, stir and cover then cook another 40 minutes on simmer. Correct the seasoning to taste and set aside till red to serve. Just before serving, stir in cognac. Ladle in to bowls and top with toasts. Sprinkle toasts with Swiss cheese and broil till bubbly.

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