French Onion Soup with homemade stock take an ordinary meal and gives it an extraordinary beginning. French Onion Soup has an aura of being so difficult to make, that it is best left to the experts, and enjoyed when you go out to eat. This is so not true. My recipe for French onion soup is easy to make and makes a large pot of soup. You can freeze the extra and “whip” up a bowl of this soup in no time at all.
French Onion Soup, the Why and the How:
What makes French Onion Soup so delicious?
French Onion Soup needs either homemade beef stock or lots of Caramelized onion to make it outstanding and extra tasty. Farmer Fred likes to say, “No bone leaves our house without being boiled first. I save all of the peelings from our onions and carrots. If I didn’t grow them, I purchased organic ones because I love to use the peelings in my homemade stock. I also save all of the celery leaves and ends. When I get a 1-gallon bag full of vegetable scraps and a gallon bag full of beef scraps and beef bones I boil them and make beef stock. Click here for a detailed description of how to make either beef, vegetable, chicken, or pork broth.
If you don’t have a rich and hearty beef stock than you will need to caramelize the onions to give it that extra rich flavor of a good soup. Otherwise, you can just brown the onions.
How do I make French Onion Soup?
Start by cooking the onions. My recipe uses a lot of onion because I make a big pot of soup. You will likely want to brown or caramelize the onions by splitting them into smaller amounts and then brown or caramelize the onions in more than one pan or do it in batches.
Once the onions are browned or caramelized, add some flour to help thicken the soup and beef stock. Add the beef stock and bring to a boil. Once the stock is boiling, add the sherry and simmer for another 45 minutes to an hour. The soup is now done and ready to add the best part. Don’t tell anyone, but this is the real reason I eat French Onion Soup. All of that melted cheese and a toasty slice of an artisan baguette. YUM.
Time to Top and Serve the French Onion Soup.
Lightly toast a slice of a baguette or a piece of Italian bread. I usually use Italian bread because it gives me a bigger slice of bread. Why do I need a bigger slice of bread? To put the cheese on. I like the whole top of my soup covered with a nice thick layer of melted delicious cheese.
Fill a bowl or crock with the soup on the top with the toasted bread. Next, layer on the cheese and pop under the broiler until the cheese is melted and lightly browned. Serve, enjoy, and daydream away about a French Bistro.
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- 4 lbs sliced sweet onions (Vidalia or Spanish)(1.8kg)
- 1 tsp salt if you use unsalted stock.
- 1 stick butter(113g)
- 2 tbsp all-purpose flour
- 2 quarts beef stock(2 liters) Homemade is best
- ½ cup dry sherry(118ml)
- 8 slices thick-sliced Italian bread
- 1 lb shredded qruyere cheese(453g)
- Salt and pepper to taste.
- Slice the sweet onions and saute in 1 stick of butter in a large Dutch oven. If you don't have a large dutch oven split the onions in half and saute in two large frying pans. Saute until the onions are nicely browned. You can stop at this point or continue to cook until the onions are caramelized. This takes about 20 minutes.
- Add the salt and flour, stir to mix in. If you are using salted beef stock don't add the salt. Adjust the salt to your taste at the end.
- Add the beef stock and stir in.
- Bring to a boil and add the dry Sherry. Turn the heat down and simmer an additional 45 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Lightly toast a thick slice of Italian bread.
- Add the soup to a bowl or soup crock. Top with the bread with 2 ounces (56g) of shredded cheese.
- Place under the broiler until the cheese has melted and is bubbly and lightly browned. Serve immediately.