I believe today is the last day we are going to post for soup week. I realized that none of the soups I made for this week were really ‘different’. Chili, chicken chili and finally…french onion. All delicious, but nothing too crazy as far as recipes go. My mom just bought me The Soup Bible cookbook and I have bookmarked a ton of recipes to try, so I promise this won’t be the end of the soup recipes (if you don’t like soup, this is probably pretty bad news). But, I eat soup all winter long and hopefully you do too.
I’m pretty excited about today’s recipe. I absolutely love French onion soup. What is not to love about hunks of bread soaked in broth and then topped with melty cheese? Oh, and the soup part is good too.
I think I first discovered french onion soup in high school. My friend Alex and I used to go to Lucy’s at least once a week and both order French Soup and diet cokes (I’m sure they loved us and our 10 dollar bill). They always sat us in the awkward half booth which we hated because it was clearly meant for couples. Do you know what I’m talking about? It is just one bench but curved…but you are basically sitting next to the other person instead of across from them.
Anyways, that has nothing to do with this soup, but French onion soup always makes me think of that restaurant.
I decided to make french onion in the crockpot because I always love using the crockpot when I can. Also, since I cry whenever an onion is anywhere near me, I figured the crockpot would keep the fumes concealed a little bit. That actually wasn’t a consideration beforehand, but it should have been.
This recipe is absolutely perfect for a fall or winter day and I think it is filling enough to make a full meal, with maybe a side salad. Or maybe just a few extra pieces of bread to dip in the broth once the top piece is gone (which is usually immediately if you are anything like me).
Crockpot French Onion Soup
4 large onions, thinly sliced
1.5 T butter, melted
1 T olive oil
2 T brown sugar
3 T flour
1 T balsamic vinegar
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 t salt
1/2 t pepper
2 t dried thyme
64 ounces beef broth
Sliced french baguette
Gruyere cheese—I used the shredded gruyere mix from Trader Joe’s which I thought worked perfectly
Directions: Set crockpot to high and add onions, garlic, brown sugar, butter, salt, balsamic and mix until combined. Cover and let cook for 45 minutes, stirring it occasionally. You want the onions to carmelize a little on the edges. Once that happens, add in the flour and brown sugar and stir thoroughly. Cook this for 15 minutes (still on high). Then add the thyme, beef broth and pepper. Turn crockpot to low and let cook for 6-8 hours.
After the soup is cooked, pour into bowls, add a slice of bread and cover the top in cheese (the more cheese the better, which is why I didn’t list an exact amount). If some cheese runs over the top–all the better. Put the bowls under the broiler until cheese melts and starts to brown. Serve right away and be careful because the bowls will be hot!
A few notes: This can be done on the stovetop. Everything will be the same, but times will be shorter. Also, if you don’t have bowls that would typically be used for french onion and feel like a normal bowl would be a cheese overload (if there is such a thing). You could always broil the bread with cheese first and then add it to the top of the boil afterwards.
I’m off to First Fridays at the MCA, my first time going and I’m very excited!
Hope everyone has a great weekend!