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French Onion Soup | Recipeish | Gustus Vitae

Yield: 4 Appetizer sized portions.
Time Estimate: 2 1/2 Hours.
Storage Notes: Best if enjoyed immediately.
Difficulty: Easy.

To our way of thinking, a proper French Onion soup is the epitome of French paysan cooking. Just a couple base ingredients, including an substantial amount of butter and a bit of red wine, and a willingness to take your time making this, will result is something that is somehow simultaneously more than the sum of its parts and the ultimate expression of 'onion-ness', if that's a thing. This is a soup worth making - you may have had good French Onion soup before, but this one is worth the wait. 


  • 5 Large white onions
  • 1 Baguette
  • 6 Cloves garlics
  • 2 Tbs extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 Tbs Taste of of Provence
  • 3 Sticks (1 1/2 Cups) unsalted butter
  • 1 Tin French Onion Seasoning
  • 1 1/2 Cups red wine (a light Pinot Noir, if you have some)
  • 4 Cups low sodium beef stock
  • 1 Cup gruyere, emmental, or comté cheese
  • Chives for garnish
  • Peel onions, and slice thinly into long strands.
  • Bring a pot up to medium high heat, and render 2 sticks of butter. Cook until foam subsides, and butter begins to brown. Add olive oil.
  • Add onions and 2 Tbs of French Onion Seasoning. Cook for 45 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • At this point, onions should be well browned and approaching a jam-like consistency.
  • Pour in red wine, adding 2/3rds stick unsalted butter and 2 Tbs Taste of Provence, stirring as you do. Cook, stirring occasionally for a further 15 minutes to burn off the alcohol.
  • Add beef stock and 2 more Tbs of French Onion Seasoning, and bring up to a boil. Reduce back to medium, and cook for a further 30 minutes, reducing the volume by about 1/4th.
  • Preheat oven to broil. Slice baguette into rounds, smear remaining butter on one side, and top with minced garlic and a dash of French Onion Seasoning.
  • Toast for 1-2 minutes, until ridges turn a dark brown and baguettes have become toast and lost all their moisture.
  • Grate cheese, and mince chives as finely as you can.
  • Arrange 4 small bowls or large ramekins on an oven tray, and ladle in soup. Leave 1/2" of space at the top.
  • Arrange toasted baguette slices atop bowls/ramekins, like these handsome ones from Emile Henry, then sprinkle each with grated cheese.
  • Pop under the broiler for about 2 minutes, keeping an eye on it as you do. Ideally, the cheese should be thoroughly melted, with rich caramel-hued splotches just beginning to appear.
  • Remove, garnish with chives, serve, and devour.

If you'd like to get these lovely ceramic ramekins for yourself, have a look at Emile Henry, and take 20% off with code GV20.