Howdie gals, today I bring you some comfort for the soul. You see comfort food was on my mind a lot this weekend. I needed it.
Summer may have started officially this week, but someone forgot to tell the Dutch weather gods. The weekend was cold, wet, windy and nothing like summer. We’ve been cooked up all weekend and that made me crave for some comfort food. Easy to make, last-minute-decision-comfort-food.
I felt that a nice hot soup would fit that bill exactly.
So here I share with you the recipe for easy French onion soup.
This soup is everything you need from comfort food. Hot, savory, filling and with lots of cheese.
And the good thing is, you can have it on the table in about half an hour. So many soups need hours to simmer, to become really good. Not this one. 30 minutes is all you need.
And you know what else I love about this soup. The limited amount of ingredients. All kitchen staples none the less. That makes this soup, the ideal go-to soup when I haven’t done any special shopping.
You will have to do some chopping though…..
………….. and that may make you cry
For onion soup you need onions. I didn’t have any. I had shallots. Worked pretty good too. Besides the obvious main ingredients of onions and cheese, you’ll need some spices. No salt though, the cheese provides plenty of that.
Whenever I cook with loose pepper corns like this, I put them into a little tea-egg. That way I can just take them out when the soup is ready.
Besides the peppers I used bay leaves and flat parsley (both from the garden), some yellow curry powder and mace (for the Dutchies: dat is foelie). If you don’t have that nutmeg will do too.
While the soup was simmering and smelling good and very healthy. I started working on the true comfort part. Grading up the cheese.
Being the little Dutch cheese head that I am, I used Gouda cheese of course. But any cheese that will melt and brown will do. Make it a good savory cheese and not the plastic kind though. This is comfort food after all.
While you are at it. Prepare a little toast and cut it in a quarter.
Because once the soup has simmered for 20 minutes, you pour it in a fireproof soup dish, put the toast in and top with loads of cheese.
Officially you should now put it in a hot oven, but I do not have any patience so I just popped it under the broiler. When the cheese has melted and is starting to brown at the edges, it is ready to serve.
If you want to do this all fancy. You could use a slice of French baguette in the soup and serve the rest of the loaf with butter on the side. I wasn’t prepared for that. I served it with the cut off pieces of toast.
That’s it: French onion soup for you. I am not sure what exactly is French about it, but you can get this at every bistro restaurant in my town and they all call it French onion soup. Anyway French or not it is good!
Recipe French Onion Soup
6 large onions (or 8 to 9 shallots), half chopped other half in rings
butter or oil,
stock or a cube
bay leaves, pepper, parsley, curry powder, mace powder (and any other herbs you fancy)
cheese (about 2 cups but I always use more)
toast, baguette, biscuit buns
Brown the onions in some butter and / or oil.
Add about a teaspoon of curry powder and of mace, stir for another minute.
Pour in a liter (4 cups) of water with a bouillon cube, or stock.
Simmer for 20 minutes.
Prepare the grated cheese and the bread / toast
When the soup is ready, serve it in oven proof dishes, add the bread and top generously with the cheese.
Pop in a hot oven for 20 minutes or speed prepare it for two minutes under the broiler (don’t leave it too long, stay with it).
Serve with bread and butter on the side.
Enjoy en be comforted.