How do you make your onion soup? Are you a chicken broth person, a beef broth person, a combination, or something else? Do you cook your onions
entirely soft or leave a bit of toothiness? Do you add a wine or liquor? Some recipes use brandy, some use Sherry, and some like good old red wine. Do you add any herbs or other seasonings? How about toppings? Toast? Croutons? Swss? Gruyere?
I use beef broth, caramelize the onions but leave a little toothiness. Alcohol is Amontillado. Herb is fresh time. I like toasted rounds of baguette topped with Gruyere, but often use Swiss instead. This is my traditional way of using up the ribs from the holiday roast.
We don’t get too fancy here. Caramelize onions in half butter and olive oil until toothsome. Maybe a half cup of white wine until alcohol is burned off. Boxed beef stock. Simmer for an hour. Then add some raw grated onion to cut the sweetness. This is key for us. Hard toasted French bread. Layered with more than likely Swiss. Very rarely Gruyère. Hot soup ladled in and toast and more cheese on top. Broiled until golden brown. I told my husband a month ago the one thing I wanted for Xmas were a couple of “long handled” onion soup crocks. At my age it’s best for potholders. He came through. I have no use for the tops they come with, but that’s standard for onion soup crocks. Good thread. We love French onion soup. Even if our variation is not necessarily authentic.
Both beef and chicken broth, if I have it . Caramelize the onions but yeah I leave something to chew on- oh, I’m sorry, toothiness - definitely Amantillado. It’s Casa Amontillado here. Thyme. I will use toasted baguette rounds or even croutons if I don’t have a real loaf - copious amounts of Gruyère but Swiss will do. Trader Joe’s and for a time Whole foods had these cylindrical 1 person portions of onion soup - frozen - that you could doctor up with croutons and more cheese. The interesting thing was that the broth was vegetarian- no beef or chicken. Looked and tasted completely beefy. Better living through hydrolized some kind of protein. I know there are kosher chicken instant soup mixes that look and taste like chicken broth but are in fact Pareve —- neither dairy nor meat. Some one back in college gave me the recipe for Mensa Onion Soup - the stock was made from one can of chicken broth, one can of beef broth, and one can of undiluted beef consommé. Sautéed onions, crouton and Swiss cheese topping. It wasn’t terrible for college cooking. not at all.
I like that product too. Trader Joe’s still has them, although they were out for a couple of months. Last I saw, Costco has them too (as of a month or two ago), but I think it’s a seasonal item for them.
On the rare occasions I make it: fully caramelized (not toothsome at all) onions and a mixture of chicken and beef broth. I use this Anthony Bourdain recipe but my onions have never been done in 20 minutes, more like 60.
I had never had French Onion Soup until last week, when DH made some that was outstanding, and I hope he makes it again this winter.
Vegetarian version because that’s how we roll.
He used mushroom flavour BTB. He sauteed the onions until they still retained a little texture. Added lots of gruyere. Baguette slices with more gruyere for the top. Some kind of white wine per whatever recipe he followed.
Got the brown and cream crocks (no handles, just the little ears, for easier storage) from Amazon. There are many sizes and colours of this shape of crock available.
ETA: these crocks are freezer, oven, microwave safe, though I would not go straight from freezer to oven.