i love french onion soup. in fact, i have a blog post on the classic soup from December 2010. however, that recipe uses a Merlot wine, and this one is just as delicious without the wine. in France most cooking is done with wine, so i feel that this recipe is a real great find, since the depth of flavor comes from the five different types of onions, rather than one type of onion and the taste of the wine. i found this recipe in coastal living magazine. it is from chef Robert Wiedmaier in Washington d.c.
this recipe will make four servings, which could be saved and frozen if not used at one meal. prepare the soup until the broiling stage prior to freezing. to make the soup: melt 1/2 cup margarine in a large sauce pot. add one large white onion, one large red onion, and 2-3 shallots. make certain to chop the onions into bite sized pieces. cook these onions about 30 minutes on medium heat until they are softened and a deep golden brown. this cooking time adds the depth of flavor to the soup.
add fresh thyme wrapped in a bundle and 1/2 teaspoon caraway seeds. don’t leave out these ingredients. they totally add to the delicious flavor of the soup. add 4 cups of chicken broth and 2 cups of beef broth. a combination of these broths also gives the soup a delicious character and taste. bring to a boil and reduce the heat, simmering for about 20 minutes to incorporate the soup flavor. remove the thyme bundle and season with salt and pepper after tasting.
ladle the soup into individual bowls. top with toasted crusty bread, that has been sprinkled with cheese. i used swiss, fontina, and Gruyère. a small amount does go a long way, unless not concerned with calories. place the soup bowls on a baking sheet and broil for two to four minutes until the cheese is bubbly and brown. sprinkle the soup with chopped green onions and chives. serve and enjoy.
i promise this will be the best soup you have made in a long time.