We are getting really close to the end of my 31 days of soup now and I knew before I reached the end I HAD to pay homage to that fancy restaurant staple, Soupe a l'Oignon au Fromage. I have to admit, I am not a huge fan of French Onion Soup. Don't get me wrong, I like onions and love cheese, but somehow I think I never could get that satisfied by such a simple yet rich soup. Something about the emptiness of the calories tends to make me sick to the stomach before I get full which is really never a good combination. That said I didn't try to alter the recipe to make it lighter or to make it more satisfying. I have never made it before and it's such a classic I felt like I didn't have adequate knowledge to start messing with a (generally acknowledged) good thing. I do have to admit that I made one (rather large) substitution. Classic French Onion soup is really simple: butter, onions, garlic, beef stock, salt, pepper. However given that Jay hasn't eaten beef in 10 years I didn't think it was a good idea to introduce it to his digestive system - too big of a risk to my night's sleep. Substituting chicken stock for beef stock REALLY alters the flavor but it had to be done. If you are a beef eater and want to make this recipe, I suggest using it. Otherwise I tried to use a selection of onions which I think made the soup sweeter. If that sounds good to you, go for it:
French Onion Soup
1/4 cup butter
3 large onions, sliced
2 large shallots, sliced
6 garlic cloves, sliced
1/2 cup white wine
6 cups chicken broth (or beef broth if you have the enzymes)
1 tsp Dijon mustard
12 slices french bread, toasted
1 1/2 cup Gruyere cheese, sliced
Melt butter in a large soup pot over medium heat. Add onions, shallots and garlic and and saute until very tender and brown, about 45 minutes. Add wine and simmer 3-4 minutes. Add chicken broth and mustard and simmer for 20 minutes. Salt and pepper to taste.
Preheat broiler. Ladle soup into ovenproof bowls. Top each with toast and cheese. Broil until cheese melts and bubbles.