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Oct 24, 2006 12:39 PM

French Onion Soup.....

Now that it's cold here on the East Coast....looking to start experimenting with soup recipes. Anyone have an excellent French Onion Soup recipe?


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  1. I used to make this one for my ex-SO. Not sure if its the reason we broke up but I liked the soup.

    1. I read the recipe on epicurious and I am upset by the idea of celery in onion soup. It's just wrong.

      Here is a kind of recipe (I usually don't measure, but this is pretty close)

      3 T. butter
      4 large yellow onions (sliced thin)
      2 T. flour
      1/2 t salt
      1/4 t pepper
      3 cups beef broth
      3 cups chicken broth
      1 teaspoon dried thyme
      1/3 cup dry red wine
      slices of firm French bread
      1 1/2 cup grated Gruyere
      chopped fresh parsley (optional)

      In large saucepan, melt butter. Over medium heat, cook onions until fully brown and caramelized (15-20 mins). Stir flour, salt& pepper and cook for 2-3 mins. Pour in broths and boil. Add thyme and red wine. Reduce heat and simmer uncovered for about 1/2 hour. Ladle soup into bowls and top with bread, then cheese (parsley). Melt under broiler.

      DO NOT skimp on the caramelization. It takes a while, but it makes SUCH a difference in the richness of the soup.

      3 Replies
      1. re: Main Line Tracey

        Do you by any chance have the Balthazar cookbook - I love their French onion soup. Definitely agree w/ other poster about allow onions to carmelize properly. The Balthazar recipe adds a lovely dose of port at the end of cooking. I like a combination of gruyere and fontina for the cheese - because I have a "bottom" broiler, I melt the cheese on bread slices in the broiler and then add to the soup, along with a health amount of grated cheese to the bowl before I pour in the soup.

        1. re: Main Line Tracey

          ML Tracy's recipe is right on, though..

          Bacon is also sometimes added, giving a little more richness and a smokey touch. Use a large piece and remove at the end. I prefer madera to red wine, and finishing with a splash of good port is a nice touch.
          I must reiterate that browning the onions is the key, though one must be careful not to burn them.

          1. re: tbear

            Adding port DOES sound nice. I also like the idea of adding fontina. It melts so nicely.

        2. I just made Julia Child's recipe from Mastering the Art on Sunday. It was delicious. She uses white wine instead of red and adds cognac at the end, which adds a luscious, rich flavor.

          1. The original comment has been removed
            1. The only one I've made was Alton Brown's and it was great.


              3 Replies
              1. re: Davwud

                The cider in that is scary, I would think it would be too sweet.

                To the OP: If you want to make one with a homemade stock (and this soup really benefits from that), the Washington Post ran an excellent series of cooking lessons from an instructor at La Academie de Cuisine and they started off with French Onion Soup. The instructions on the broth and caramelizing the onions are excellent and simply told. The soup is rich and deep-- wonderful.

                1. re: coconutz

                  I've made the Alton recipe without the cider and added more broth. Topped it with sliced baguette and swiss cheese ala Cook's Illustated's recipe. Very yummy!

                2. re: Davwud

                  HIs method of using an electric skillet is perfection as a technique. It really is superior to anything else.