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Sunday, March 15, 2009

soup for you

Lately, the weather in Jackson has been a touch on the dreary side. Chilly and rainy - the perfect weather for soup.

It is rare that I have a craving for soup, but one of my favorites is Kaytie's French onion soup. I decided to try it out this week.

I learned two things. First, beef stock is best for this soup. I used a mixture of beef stock and rabbit stock (leftover from when we made rabbit stew). We'd used some different spices in that recipe, like cloves, that were not the best for onion soup. Stick with beef for a hearty soup with delicate flavor.

Second, it is very important to saute the onions until they are a deep, dark brown. I quit when mine were just a golden brown (had to get to work), and the soup was too sweet (probably had something to do with the rabbit stock, too). Be patient, and brown those onions.

Kaytie's French Onion Soup

4 onions, very thinly sliced
2 Tbs butter
3 cans beef stock
dash of Worcestershire sauce
splash of Madeira, red wine, sherry, or sweet vermouth
1 bay leaf
sliced Provolone or Gruyere

Melt the butter over medium heat. Add the onions and salt liberally. Saute over medium to medium-low heat for a long time, stirring occasionally to let them brown evenly. Once the onions are deep brown but not scorched, deglaze the pan with a splash of the alcohol. Add the beef broth, bay leaf, and Worcestershire sauce. Simmer over low heat, covered, for 20-30 minutes.

Serve topped with cheese, alongside some good crusty bread.

I made a couple baguettes, recipe courtesy of The Bread Bible. (If you haven't bought this cookbook yet, you are really missing out.) I couldn't resist closing with this picture...

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