My love affair with French Onion Soup began after moving to Vancouver in the middle of winter. For those of you not familiar with the Vancouver climate, it’s much different than the rest of Canada. Instead of snow storms and mind numbingly cold temperatures; Vancouver gets a TON of rain and can be gloomy & dark. I really have to credit Vancouver for my deep love of French Onion Soup. It brings back fond memories, with some of my closest friends, in my favorite city in the world. That’s right, I said it. If you haven’t been to this beautiful place, you need to visit.
Nothing shines brighter than Vancouver on a sunny day.
French Onion Soup is easily one of my favorite soups but WHY is it so difficult for a girl to find a great French Onion Soup? I have no idea why but this dish often misses the mark when I dine out. Is it because onions take a solid 40 minutes to caramelize? Or because the quality of the beef stock really does matter? Whatever the reason, when I find a french onion soup I love, I will order it every damn time. Religiously.
I’ve heard through the grape-vine the last few days have been pretty rainy and miserable in Vancouver. I posted this recipe thinking of you all and wanted to share my rainy day favorite.
Whip up a batch of this, invite some friends over and have a few laughs over a bowl. While you’re at it, pop a couple bottles of red, because everything’s better with wine!
Bon Appétit! xx
- ½ cup unsalted butter
- 4 large onions, sliced
- 2 garlic cloves, chopped
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 fresh thyme sprigs (you can sub for 1.5 tsp of dried thyme)
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 cup red wine, about ½ bottle
- 3 heaping tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 2 quarts (8 cups) vegetable or beef broth (I use vegetable)
- 1 baguette, sliced
- ½ pound (2 cups) grated Gruyere
- Melt the stick of butter in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onions, garlic, bay leaves, thyme, and salt and pepper and cook until the onions are very soft and caramelized, about 30 minutes.
- Add the wine, bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer until the wine has evaporated and the onions are dry, about 5 minutes.
- Discard the bay leaves and thyme sprigs. Dust the onions with the flour and give them a stir. Turn the heat down to medium low so the flour doesn't burn, and cook for 10 minutes to cook out the raw flour taste.
- Now add the broth, bring the soup back to a simmer, and cook for 10 minutes. Season, to taste, with salt and pepper.
- When you're ready to eat, preheat the broiler. Arrange the baguette slices on a baking sheet in a single layer. Sprinkle the slices with the Gruyere and broil until bubbly and golden brown, 3 to 5 minutes.
- Ladle the soup into bowls, top each with 2 slices of bread and top with cheese. Put the bowls into the oven to toast the bread and melt the cheese.