French Onion Soup

6-8 Servings

NOTE:  I love French Onion Soup.  After looking at many recipes I came up with my own.  Instead of buying canned broth, I make my own.  I take soup bones and chicken necks.  I brown them in a pan and add onions, celery, carrots, garlic and peppers, all cut in large chunks.  Cook over a very low heat for a couple of hours then drain.

I actually make my own broth for any dish that calls for it.   No salt or seasoning is ever added so you can control the seasoning of any dish you make.  Try it!  It’s not hard and will make a big difference in the taste of the particular dish you are preparing.

5 sweet onions (like Vidalias) or a combination of sweet and red onions

3 Tablespoons butter

1 teaspoon salt

2 cups white wine (I use white Moscato)

10 ounces canned beef consomme (I make my own)

10 ounces chicken broth (I make my own)

10 ounces apple cider

1 slice of light oatmeal bread per serving

Kosher salt

ground black pepper

Splash of Cognac

1 cup Gruyere cheese, grated

Directions:

Trim the ends off each onion then halve lengthwise.  Remove peel and finely slice into half-moon shapes.  Put stove at a medium low heat.  Add butter.  Once butter has melted add a layer of onions and sprinkle with a little Kosher salt.  Repeat layering onions and salt until all onions are in the pot.  Do not try stirring until onions have sweated down for 15-20 minutes.  After that, stir occasionally until onions are dark mahogany and reduced to approximately 2 cups.  This should take 45 minutes to 1 hour.  Do not worry about burning.

Add enough wine to cover the onions and turn heat to high reducing the wine to a syrup consistency.  Add consomme, chicken broth and apple cider.  Reduce heat and simmer 15-20 minutes.

Season soup with salt and pepper.  Add the Cognac.  Let cook another 10-15minutes.

Place oven rack in top 1/3 of oven and heat broiler.

Cut bread into small 1/2 pieces.  Place bread pieces on a baking pan.   Put in oven and stir after 1 minute.  Cook 1/2 minute more or until pieces are brown.

Ladle soup into crocks leaving one inch to the lip.  Add bread pieces on top of soup.  Top with grated cheese.  Broil until cheese is bubble and golden, 1 to 2 minutes.

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