French onion soup

all details

I have included two serving suggestions here as I love this recipe so much. It can be served as a simple lunch, or as a feature on an extravagant dinner party menu.

Ingredients

  • 50ml duck fat
  • 8 onions, evenly sliced
  • 2 heads of garlic, finely chopped
  • 500ml white wine
  • 2 litres veal stock
  • 6 sprigs of thyme
  • Traditional topping
  • 12 large slices from a stale baguette
  • 6 tbsp grated gruyere cheese
  • Puff pastry variation
  • 12 squares of puff pastry, about 5mm thick and 2cm diameter larger than the serving bowls
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 6 tbsp grated gruyere cheese
  •  

Method

 

In a heavy-based pan, over low heat, melt the duck fat. Add the onions and cook slowly to caramelise. Add the garlic and cook for a further 2 minutes.

Deglaze the pan with the white wine. Add the veal stock and the thyme. Cook the liquid until it is reduced by one-third, then remove from the heat.

For the traditional topping, preheat the grill and toast baguette slices until golden on one side. Turn over, sprinkle the grated cheese over the croutons, and grill for 2 minutes or until cheese has melted and started to colour slightly. Serve soup in individual bowls, with a crouton on top.

For the puff pastry variation, prepare soup as above and put in individual serving bowls and leave to chill in the refrigerator.

Measure the puff pastry to fit over the bowls with an excess of at least 2cm around the edges. Put a piece of puff pastry over each bowl and seal the edges firmly. Brush the pastry top with egg wash then sprinkle grated cheese evenly over the top.

Using a lattice cutter, cut each remaining square of pastry and spread the lattice over the top of the egg-washed pastry, then gently seal the lattice edges over the top of the first layer. Rest pastry-topped bowls in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes before baking.

Preheat oven to 180 degrees. Transfer bowls to oven and cook for 20 minutes, then turn the heat down to 120 degrees for a further 10 minutes, to ensure the soup is heated through.

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  • Cuisine - French

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