Saturday, February 18, 2012

French Onion Soup

Three day weekend! Three day weekend!

I never quite understood President's Day. What are we celebrating? George Washington's Birthday? Abe Lincoln's? Barack Obama in general? I don't get it.

Well I just typed "President's Day" into Wikipedia and "Washington's Birthday" popped up so I guess that settles that. But new question...why are we still celebrating his birthday hundreds of years later? Was he even that good of a president? No. Not good enough for everyone to get his birthday off! What is this world coming to? There are a few people I could see deserving a holiday. Abraham Lincoln's birthday?...okay. FDR's...sure. Hillary Clinton's...most definitely! Okay, I digress.

Since it was a three day weekend I got to go hang out with some family last night where I got to use a KITCHEN again!!! Yay! I think they really enjoyed it too because I made French Onion Soup!

Jealous? Thought so.

But don't fear because this is a very easy recipe and it tastes just as good as any soup you'll get in a restaurant and it's probably even healthier!

I adopted this recipe from Real Simple magazine and you probably have most, if not all, of these ingredients already in your kitchen. Super easy! Give it a shot!

French Onion Soup
Serves 4


  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 3 large onions (any kind will do)
  • 1/2-1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1/2-3/4 cups of Sherry
  • 14 oz (1 3/4 cup) chicken stock
  • 2 1/4 cup water
  • 3 tsp soy sauce
  • 4 slices of baguette (I like to use multigrain for extra healthiness)
  • 1 tsp cornstarch
  • 1/4 cup shredded mozzarella (optional)
  • 4 slices Swiss cheese

1.  Slice up all three onions into thick ribbons. Heat olive oil over medium heat in a large saucepan and add the onions. Stir to coat in olive oil and add your thyme and a little salt. Stir it all together and partially cover the pot, stirring occasionally, and let them caramelize for about 15 minutes until they have a golden brown color.

2. Once caramelized, add the sherry and allow it to cook down for about 2 minutes.

3. Add chicken stock, water, and soy sauce. Stir everything together and bring it up to a boil. Then reduce to low to simmer for about 20 minutes partially covered.

4. Meanwhile, slice your baguette and toast the slices (either in a toaster or under the broiler in the oven). Once toasted, cut the toast into bite-sized pieces.

(You can use one slice of bread or however much you want, I just used up the whole loaf. And for the cheese, I would buy pre-sliced swiss just to make your life easier, but we got a block of it because it was on sale and it worked just fine. I'm just not a very good cheese-cutter)

5. After 20 minutes, taste test the soup. Add some more thyme, salt and pepper to taste. In a separate bowl, combine the cornstarch with a ladle full of soup and stir until the cornstarch is dissolved then stir mixture back into the soup. Let it cook a few more minutes.

6. Preheat broiler to high. Place soup bowls on a sturdy cookie sheet or any oven-safe pan. Divide the soup evenly among the 4 bowls. Add the cubed bread into each bowl and top with the shredded mozzarella (if using) then layer the swiss cheese on top.

7. Place bowls under the broil and broil until the cheese is melted and bubbly and French Onion Soupy.

Make sure you use oven mitts to touch the bowls because they will obviously be hot. And I would put them on plates. You could also make the soup part ahead of time and put it in the fridge and then just bring it back up to a boil and start with Step 6 when you're ready to eat. It's a little time consuming but so worth it! Classic comfort food!

CLICK HERE for the printable version.

Everyone enjoy! And have a Happy Washington's Birthday? ...I still don't get it.

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