Joe gets all the credit for this fantastic meal. All I did was drive my wonderful husband crazy by taking pictures the whole time. He asked me a few days ago what i wanted him to cook for my birthday dinner, and I responded completely out of character and requested his french onion soup. It has become one of Joe’s specialties over the past couple years, but my memories of the soup date back to early childhood. For special dinners when I was little, my family would go to a restaurant called Checkers – what is now the Kitchen Table Bistro – in Richmond, VT. Now every time i eat the soup, I picture the cozy inside of that old restaurant.
Joe’s french onion soup recipe:
- 6T butter
- 2 T evoo
- 1 lb onions, sliced thin
- 1 t sugar
- 1/2 t salt
- 1 1/2T flour
- 2 1/2 C hot beef stock/ broth
- 4 T brandy
- 4 1/2 oz Gruyere cheese (expensive, but SOOOO worth it)
- salt and pepper to taste
Croutes (toasts on top)
- 8 slices of french bread, 1/2″ thick
- 1 large clove garlic, halved
- Melt butter with the oil in a large, heavy bottom pot over medium high heat. Stir in the onions, sugar, salt and reduce heat to low. Cover and cook for 20-30 min, until the onions are a rich, dark brown. Uncover and stir constantly so they do not burn.
- Sprinkle flour over the onions and keep stirring for about 2 minutes. Add the stock/broth and let simmer for 15 minutes.
- To make the croutes preheat the broiler to high, and the oven to 400F (for later). Arrange the bread on a broiler rack and toast about 1-2 min on each side. Rub with garlic while the bread is still hot, and set aside.
- Stir the brandy into the soup and season with salt and pepper.
- Ladle the soup into separate bowls, or ramekins and distribute the bread slices on top. Top each with 1/4 of the cheese and place the bowls in the oven for 20 minutes, or until the cheese is gold and bubbling.
And here is our salad:
- Spiced Walnuts (coriander, cumin, sugar, honey, and cayenne pepper)
- Blue Cheese
- Grape Tomatoes
Joe also made a batch of BEAUTIFUL carrot cupcakes with cream cheese frosting for dessert. Unfortunately, I forgot to take a photo. The recipe came from Smitten Kitchen, but substituting a little applesauce for the oil.
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