I wanted a quick dinner last night, and had a container of chicken stock in the freezer I wanted to use up. French onion soup.
I've posted on this before, so no need to go into fine detail, but I do want to emphasize that this soup does NOT require a big investment in time, provided your pantry is well-stocked.
Variant here is that I used chicken stock. I prefer a rich beef stock for onion soup, but didn't have any on hand, and chicken stock is fine. The stock I had was not particularly rich, having been made of scraps from roasted chicken breasts, so I needed to jazz up the soup a bit.
As the pot of onions was nearing its ideal caramelized state, I poured in about 1/4 cup sweet red vermouth. Dry white vermouth would've worked, too, but the sweet red has an almost sherry-like flavor, which enhances the flavor of onion soup. I then added the stock, and salted liberally, as the stock had not been previously salted. FWIW, Aunt Millie used to say, "Kissing a man without a mustache is like eating soup without salt."
I also added a few dashes of Worcestershire sauce, and a good pinch of Ajinomoto (a.k.a., monosodium glutamate). Keep your panties on, folks, but it's a useful shortcut to add savor to food (like a wan stock). And FYI, MSG comes from fermented soybeans. Not surprisingly, so does Worcestershire sauce.
I toasted up some excellent Italian bread from Metropolitan Bakery, and arranged the crostini on top of the soup, then covered the top with about 8 oz shredded Gruyere cheese. Into a 425°F oven for 10 minutes, then under the broiler for about 3 minutes, until the cheese was melted and browned.
Served a green salad with walnut-oil dressing on the side. Awesome weeknight treat.
Tuesday, September 18, 2012
Onion soup gratinée
Dave loves to eat, and cook, and feed his family and friends. Thankfully Dave's family and friends like to eat what he cooks. Dave has achieved the Great American Dream -- suburban banality. He cooks from his modestly appointed kitchen in the leafy suburbs of Delaware County, Pennsylvania, a stone's throw from Philadelphia. Stop by for dinner. Or lunch. Or breakfast.