When the weather turns cold, French Onion Soup accompanied by a fresh green salad seems to be the perfect dinner. Here is our favorite recipe from my really old Total Woman Cookbook published in 1980. My mom made this batch while Leah, Emery, EZ and I headed out to the park for a chilly walk. Believe me, it tasted as delicious as it looks and did it ever hit the spot when we got home!
French Onion Soup Gratin
5 cups thinly sliced sweet onions (about 5)
¼ Tbsp sugar
1 Tbsp oil or bacon drippings
¼ cup sweet butter
1 Tbsp flour
3 10 ½ ounce cans condensed beef or chicken broth, undiluted (we used beef)
3 soup cans of water
1 tsp salt
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce (*we used 3 tablespoons)
Dash of nutmeg
1 glove garlic, minced (*we used 2)
2 dozen slices French bread, cut very thin and toasted or dried in oven
1 ½ cup Swiss or Gruyere cheese, grated (*we used Swiss slices)
1. Early in the day, sprinkle onion slices with sugar.(*No need to do this early in the day) Sauté slowly in oil and butter until golden. Sprinkle flour over onions and blend in. Add beef or chicken broth, water, salt, pepper, Worcestershire, nutmeg, and garlic. Cover and simmer gently 45 minutes.
2. Put 4 or 5 slices of bread in each individual 12-ounce ovenproof bowl. Fill bowls halfway with the liquid. This is important as bread will soften and absorb some liquid. Keep adding liquid gradually to the bowls, making sure they are filled evenly to the top with liquid. This is very important, as the cheese crust must not sink into the bowl.
3. Sprinkle cheese on top, without pushing it into liquid, about ¼ cup of cheese per bowl. Press the cheese all around the edges of each bowl so that when it melts it sticks to the sides and forms a crust. Place bowls in 400 degree oven for approximately 35 minutes.
I had been wanting to try Pioneer Woman's Blackberry Cobbler. However, blueberries happened to be on sale, so I made Blueberry Cobbler (she also suggests peaches or raspberries). It was scrumptious served warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. A perfectly satisfying meal for a chilly night in Boone, or anywhere for that matter. You will have to give these recipes a try!