French onion is one of my favorite soups and this one has amazing, deep flavor. This recipe is so simple to throw together that I made it on a weeknight. It takes about an hour, but you have plenty of opportunity to get other things prepared (like the bread or a side salad) while the onions are cooking or the soup simmering. The recipe only serves two or three - so if you need to feed the whole family, you'll need to double or triple this recipe.
French Onion Soup
1 pound yellow onions (about two large onions),quartered and thinly cut lengthwise
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
3 to 5 sprigs of fresh thyme
1 bay leaf
salt & fresh cracked pepper to taste
1 teaspoon flour
1/2 cup dry white wine (I used a Chardonnay)
4 cups beef stock or broth (2 cans)
2 cups water
2 or 3 slices of fresh bread (ciabatta or baguette or mild sour dough), 1/2-inch-thick
1 1/2 cups grated Swiss Gruyère cheese
Melt the butter in a large stockpot over medium heat. Add the onions, thyme, bay leaf, salt, and pepper and cook until the onions are soft and a deep caramel color, stirring occasionally. It will take about 25 minutes.
Stir in the flour and allow to cook for about 30 seconds. Pour in the wine and allow it to bubble for a minute or two. Add the beef stock and water. Cook for about 30 minutes on low, stirring occasionally. Simmering will allow the flavors to blend together and become incredibly luscious and delicious.
While the soup is simmering, place the slices of bread on a cookie sheet and set the oven to BROIL. Toast the bread under the broiler for a few minutes on each side until nicely browned. Remove the toast from the oven and set aside until the soup is done simmering.
Ladle the soup into bowls. Place a piece of the toast on top of each and sprinkle generously with the grated Gruyere. Place the bowls back in the oven under the broiler until the cheese is melted and bubbly. Be very careful handling the hot bowls. (I place the bowls on a cookie sheet so they are easier to move in and out of the oven). Enjoy!