Who doesn’t love a nice bowl of soup when it’s cold and rainy out? How about a homemade bowl of soup? Better yet, a soup that you’ve thrown in the crock pot and let simmer while you do something more productive with your time, like maybe watching last week’s Parenthood episode?
I love just about all things French. French onion soup is no exception. I’m not sure when my obsession actually began. I took French in high school, but I’m guessing it started before that. Maybe I have my grandma to thank: she practiced French grammar workbooks as a hobby! Regardless, you can’t beat a bowl of slow cooked onions topped with crusty bread and gooey cheese in my book!
In honor of Meatless Monday, I do want to acknowledge an oversight in my previous Meatless Monday post for Roasted Tomato Soup. The point of Meatless Monday is to avoid meat. For me, I like the challenge to be creative with vegetable-centered recipes. I am not a vegetarian. I eat all kinds of meat. I think it’s OK to eat fatty foods, in moderation, just as I think it’s OK to eat sugar, again in moderation. I think Meatless Mondays are a great way to keep meat consumption in check, which to me is just an overarching philosophy for my life in general. While I’m not a fan of meat-industry practices as a whole, that’s another can of worms. I choose to approach Meatless Mondays from a nutritional standpoint, and I think vegetables should be the mainstay of our diets. So, in posting my tomato soup recipe, I overlooked the fact that it calls for chicken stock. Obviously, if you’re a vegetarian, you probably already caught that. But, if you’re new to Meatless Mondays and to the idea of moderating your meat consumption, you may have missed it as well. While I do think the chicken stock adds a level of hardiness to the soup, in order to make it a true Meatless Monday, you should use vegetable stock.
I bring this up because today’s recipe is another case in point. This French onion soup is made with beef stock. For Meatless Monday, though, you should substitute vegetable stock. Given the cheese AND bread, I don’t think you’ll miss the beef. 🙂 Serve a side salad with a Dijon vinaigrette, and you have a complete meal.
- 6 lbs onions, sliced
- 1/4 cup butter
- 14 cups beef stock
- 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 bay leaf
- 1/4 teaspoon thyme
- salt and pepper
For 2 servings
- 2 tablespoons sherry wine (optional)
- 2 slices toasted crusty bread
- 2 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese
- 1/4 cup shredded gruyere cheese
- Over medium heat, sauté the onion in butter until soft and translucent.
- De-glaze cooking skillet with some of the beef stock; this is the secret to that taste.
- Add to slow cooker along with the remaining beef broth.
- Add Worcestershire sauce, thyme and bay leaf.
- Cover; cook on High for 4 hours or on low for 6-8 hours.
- Add salt and pepper to taste. Remove bay leaf.
- Divide soup into appropriate containers.
- Seal and freeze.
- When ready to enjoy your French Onion Soup, remove from freezer and place in a microwave dish with 2 tbsp sherry; heat for 5 minutes.
- Add Parmesan cheese to your onion soup bowl. Place one slice of toasted bread over the cheese. Fill bowl with soup.
- Top with shredded Gruyère cheese.
- Place under broiler to melt your cheese.
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