French Onion Soup with Gruyere Croutes
- 2 ounces butter
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 4 1/2 pounds yellow onions, peeled and sliced
- 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 tablespoon sherry vinegar
- 6 1/2 cups beef or chicken broth
- 1 1/2 tablespoon flour
- 2/3 cups dry white wine
- 3 tablespoons brandy
- salt & pepper to taste
- 6 - 12 thick slices of French Bread
- roasted garlic spread
- 1 cup coarsely grated Gruyere cheese
Preparation time 15mins
Cooking time 98mins
1. Melt the butter and oil in a large pan. Add the onions and stir to coat them in the fat. Cook over a medium heat for 5-8 minutes, stirring once or twice, until the onions begin to soften. Stir in thyme.
2. Reduce the heat to very low, cover the pan an cook the onions for 20-30 minutes, stirring frequently, until they are very soft and golden brown.
3. Uncover the pan and increase the heat slightly. Stir in the sugar and cook for 5-10 minutes, until the onions start to brown. Add the sherry vinegar and increase the heat again, then continue cooking, stirring frequently, until the onions turn a deep, golden brown - this could take up to 20 minutes.
4. Meanwhile, bring the stock to a boil in another pan. Stir the flour into the onions and cook for about 2 minutes, then gradually pour in the hot stock. Add the woine and brandy and season the soup to taste with salt and pepper. Simmer for 10-15 minutes.
5. For the Croutes, preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Place the slices of bread on a baking sheet and bake until toasted. Rub the bread with the garlic spread, then sprinkle with the grated Gruyere cheese ove the slices.
6. Preheat broiler, place the cheese bread under the broiler and cook until melted and browned.
7. Ladle soup into bowls and float the croutes on top and serve immediately.