Monday, October 3, 2011

Slow-Cooker French Onion Soup

Mise en Place
(Unfortunately my camera died before I could take any more pics.  Email me or leave a comment if the directions aren't clear.)

I've never liked French Onion Soup, I've just never found one that didn't taste like canned beef broth.  So I decided to try THIS recipe. It's fall and I love my husband, and it's relatively healthy.  I followed the recipe pretty darn close, except, I used beef stock I had reserved in my freezer and some from our pot roast last night.  It's a lot of beef stock.  But well worth it.  I used non-alcoholic beer(2 bottles for tasty measure) so it has great flavor.

I tweaked the bread slightly.  First, toast the bread under the broiler for a few minutes on each side.  This helps prevent the bread from becoming instantly gummy.  Spread one side lightly with one clove of roasted garlic.  I made 2 bulbs of roasted garlic today and they spread like "buttah".  Ladel some soup into the bowl, then plop the toasted bread garlic side up on top of the Onion Soup.  Place a slice of Swiss Cheese or sprinkle generously with grated Gruyere.  It's okay to overlap.  Broil for 2-3 minutes, until cheese starts to bubble and brown.  Serve very carefully as bowl will be very hot.

This would be a FANTASTIC get together dish.  Just toast up the bread as above, on a cookie sheet with the garlic and cheese.  Leave on a side plate for people to top their soups as they dish it up.  (We had a funky schedule tonight with meetings and sports, so I did this for the kiddos that came home later, it worked)

Slow-Cooker French Onion Soup
(adapted from

makes 8-10 servings
4 med. sweet onions, sliced thin
3 garlic cloves, pressed
1/4 cup of butter, sliced into pats
2 tablespoons good balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/4 cup flour
2 bottles non-alcoholic beer(such as O'Doul's)
8 cups GOOD beef stock
1 Tbl. dried thyme
1 tsp. fresh ground black pepper
1/2-1 teaspoon kosher salt
Sourdough or French bread(stale works best)
gruyere cheese, sliced or grated
Add onions, garlic, brown sugar, butter, salt and balsamic and mix until combined in a large slow-cooker. Cover and let cook on high for 60-90 minutes, stirring every 20 minutes, until onions are translucent and brown on the edges and just caramelized. Sift in flour and stir thoroughly, let sit for 5 minutes with lid on. Sprinkle in Thyme, fresh ground pepper, beer, and stir well.  Add in remaining beef stock, and cover.  Cook on high for 4 hours, then turn down to low and cook an additional 2-4 hours.  
Slice sourdough or French bread into 1" thick slices.  Arrange on non-stick cookie sheet and toast each side under broiler.  Leave door open slightly and watch closely so they don't burn.  Remove from oven and spread each slice with  one clove of roasted garlic.  Fill soup bowls almost to the top, cover with slice of bread and a handful of grated cheese or slice. Set under the broiler for 2-3 minutes(leave door open so you can watch carefully), or until cheese is bubbly and golden brown. Be careful when serving as bowls will be hot!  Sprinkle with fresh parsley or fresh thyme.  

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