It’s that time of the year, when you can no longer pretend that winter is not coming. That cute leather jacket goes to the back of the closet, and sweaters are removed from their slumber in plastic bags under the bed. And while there are many reasons to complain, and complain, and complain some more about the legitimately freezing weather, there are somethings to get excited about. Hot chocolate, and of course, soup.
A favorite of mine is French Onion Soup. Sweet and savory broth, crispy French bread, and bubbly gruyere on top. It’s what winter should taste like, and I couldn’t wait for the first chilly day to whip out my cute new ramekins to make homemade soup.
I turned to the ultimate chef, a man who has really never steered me wrong on my culinary quest to perfect the basics, Tyler Florence (sorry Ina).
His recipe is simple (although I will admit it took double the time to caramelize onions — anyone have good recommendations as to what I could possibly be doing wrong?). And the end result is delicious. Be sure to make the full recipe — or perhaps even double it (a half portion only made two bowls of soup).
French Onion Soup
Adapted from Tyler Florence
1/2 cup unsalted butter
4 onions, sliced
2 garlic cloves, chopped
2 bay leaves
2 fresh thyme sprigs
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 cup red wine, about 1/2 bottle
3 heaping tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 quarts beef broth
1 French baguette, sliced
1/2 pound grated Gruyere
- Melt the stick of butter in a large pot over medium heat.
- Add the onions, garlic, bay leaves, thyme, and salt and pepper and cook until the onions are very soft and caramelized, about 25 minutes.
- Add the wine, bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer until the wine has evaporated and the onions are dry, about 5 minutes. Discard the bay leaves and thyme sprigs.
- Dust the onions with the flour and give them a stir.
- Turn the heat down to medium low so the flour doesn’t burn, and cook for 10 minutes to cook out the raw flour taste.
- Add the beef broth, bring the soup back to a simmer, and cook for 10 minutes. Season, to taste, with salt and pepper.
- Preheat the broiler.
- Ladle the soup into bowls (make sure they can withstand the heat of the oven), top each with 2 slices of bread and top with cheese. Put the bowls into the oven to toast the bread and melt the cheese.