Here is a dish that is a true pillar of the French culinary tradition! One would even say an icon of traditional French cuisine. I had posted about this years ago, but I thought we were due for a refresher post. Plus it’s so darn cold outside :0)
Try the recipe and tell me how it was. For the anecdote, the onion soup was called the soup of the drunks, because it hides very well the smell of red wine: 0) My recipe seems so simple that you could be tempted to add beer, wine or beef/chicken broth. DO NOT DO IT! I myself was tempted the first time and I did well to resist!
For 3 bowls:
- Cut 9 small yellow onions into thin strips (small onions have more flavor and less water) and sauté them in butter. This is the most important step and it took me about 30 minutes over medium heat. The goal is to sauté the onions until you get a uniform caramel color. If you burn them, you will have to start all over again as it will make your soup bitter. YOU WILL REMAIN BY YOUR STOVE AT ALL TIMES. The taste of your soup will depend on this step (The photos here will show you the exact color you need to get).
- Sprinkle a small tablespoon of flour and mix well
- Add 1.5 liters of water and let simmer for about 15mn. Salt, pepper and voila! Taste and add water or salt as necessary.
- Put the soup into ovenproof bowls up to half a centimeter from the top (the pictures show that I was about a quarter of an inch too low)
- Place a slice of toasted baguette on top and then a layer of grated Comté
- Place under the grill for a few minutes. Take it out and sprinkle chopped parsley for color. Serve very hot.
A great thing about this dish is that everything can be done the day before, except for the last 3 steps which you’ll have to follow on the day. It is less stressful if you have guests: 0)