This is a classic that never grows old, often served as an appetizer it’s also hearty enough to stand alone an a main course. While there are many versions of French onion soup the principle is the same in all, onions, beef broth, a bread of some type and cheese. For me a French onion soup isn’t complete without port or sherry and my go to cheese is always gruyere.
This recipe uses an old fashioned method of making a sachet bag, we use cheesecloth to make ours but if your stuck you can carefully cut the top from a tea bag, empty it, add your spices then tie it off.
2 tbsp butter
8 large onions, julienned
8cups beef broth
1 tbsp Kitchen Bouquet (see notes below)
1/2cup Port or Sherry
1 tsp salt
1 tsp fresh ground black pepper
6 slices of hearty bread
1cup gruyere, shredded
1 tbsp black peppercorns
2 bay leaves
1/2 tbsp dried thyme or 4 sprigs fresh thyme
1 tsp coarse sea salt
Preheat oven to 400. F
Melt butter in a heavy bottomed pot.
Add the onions and sweat ( cook slowly) until they begin to turn golden, 10-15 minutes.
Meanwhile assemble sachet bag. Wrap peppercorns, bay leaves, thyme, and salt in cheesecloth, tie the top with butchers twine.
Add beef broth, Kitchen Bouquet, Port or Sherry, salt pepper and sachet bag to the pot.
Bring the contents to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 45 minutes.
Prepare bread by trimming it to fit the bowl , brush with olive oil and cook in a preheated 400 degree oven for 8-10 minutes.
Ladle soup into oven proof bowls, top with bread and cheese.
Place in a preheated 400 degree oven until cheese melts and begins to brown around the rim of the bowl, 8-10 minutes.
Kitchen Bouquet is a browning and seasoning sauce found in most grocery stores. Suitable substitutions are; Worcestershire sauce, Bragg Liquid Aminos, dark soy sauce. If you use dark soy sauce cut back the salt in the recipe.