Monday, January 28, 2013

Recipe: Classic French Onion Soup

I cut the bread a little too thick.
Cut them into 1/2 inch slices.

This past weekend, I made America's Test Kitchen's Classic French Onion Soup recipe. 

So flavorful.  So delicious.  But it took a lot of time. . . 3 1/2 hours.  (Active cooking time was only about an hour and a half.)  It was worth all of the time and effort.

The soup was a great winter dinner and wasn't that unhealthy as I usually think French Onion Soup to be.  For a large pot of soup (6 servings), here were the ingredients:
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 3 pieces
  • 6 large yellow onions (about 4 pounds), halved and cut pole to pole into 1/4-inch-thick slices
  • table salt
  • 2 cups water, plus extra for deglazing
  • 1/2 cup dry sherry
  • 4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 cups beef broth
  • 6 sprigs fresh thyme, tied with kitchen twine
  • 1 bay leaf
  • ground black pepper
  • 1 small baguette, cut into 1/2 inch slices
  • 8 ounces shredded Gruyere cheese (about 2 1/2 cups)

TIP:  How to prevent shedding tears while chopping onions
I have The Complete America's Test Kitchen TV Show Cookbook, and on p.251 "Behind the Scenes," it says that if you light a candle near where you're cutting the onions, the flame changes the activity of the thiopropanal sulfoxide (the volatile compound that causes tearing) by completing its oxidation, and you won't tear up.  I lit a tealight candle, near my chopping board, and it worked!  I didn't "cry" at all.

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