300g brown onion, sliced
1 Tbsp flour (about 10g)
1 litre of water
Salt & pepper to taste
Toasted baguette slices
100g comté, gruyère or cheddar cheese, grated
During the long winter months, traditional and rustic French Onion Soup is a great one to make if you want an easy and delicious meal that uses up some of those left over onions which may have started piling up in the cupboard.
There’s no cream, no stock, nothing at all complex that will overpower the aromas and natural sweetness of onions! French Onion Soup puts the main ingredient front-and-centre of the dish, along with grilled and gooey cheese – the variety of which can be adjusted to your personal tastes.
The trick about getting French Onion Soup right is to follow the cooking times and instructions closely. The difference between a flavoursome and not-so-flavoursome soup is the speed and duration of cooking and caramelisation.
- Put a litre of water to boil.
- Slice 300g of brown onions into thin slices.
- On low heat, melt 30g of good quality organic butter into a stainless steel pot (don’t use non-stick).
- Throw in your onion slices, and toss to coat with butter. Put a lid on your pot and very gently cook for 1o minutes, stirring occasionally.
- After 10 minutes, remove the lid and continue cooking on low heat for at least an additional 15 minutes. On the road to caramelisation, the onions will lose over half their volume, turn brown and start to smell deliciously sweet.
- Make sure you stir frequently to avoid any burning, and ensure caramelisation happens evenly.
- Add the flour and stir briskly. Then add one ladle of boiling water, whisk and then pour in the remaining hot water.
- On medium heat now, simmer the soup and reduce by one quarter.
- Add salt and pepper to taste, then ladle your soup into separate oven-proof serving bowls or a communal dish.
- Arrange baguette slices on top, and sprinkle with comté or gruyère cheese if you can find them, or your favourite cheddar if you prefer.
- Pop under the grill on a baking tray for 5-10, until cheese is melted, bubbling and browned.
Enjoy your French Onion Soup – a recipe passed down from grandmother to mother, from mother to daughter on Cuisine Campagne.
Hints and Tips
If you like a little more kick, consider adding a dash of dry white wine just before pouring in the water.