French Onion Soup


  • 1 cup Fontina or Gruyere Chesse (grated)
  • 1 loaf country style bread
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 10 ounces canned beef consume
  • 10 ounces chicken broth
  • 2 cups white whine (Chardonnay works well)
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 5 Sweet Onions
  • Bouquet garni; thyme sprigs, bay leaf and parsley tied together
  • Splash of Cognac (optional)


  1. Trim the ends off each onion then halve lengthwise. Remove peel and finely slice into half moon shapes. I suggest using a mandolin (with cutting glove), but it isn't strictly necessary.
  2. Melt the butter in the bottom of pot, then set the heat to medium-low.
  3. Place the onions in the pot and mix to coat in the melted butter. Sprinkle with a pinch of salt and mix.
  4. Cover the pot and let sit. The goal here is to caramelize the onions, and allowing them to steam in the pot is the most reliable and quickest way to do this. Do not constantly remove the lid to check on the onions. Let sit for at least 15 minutes before checking, unless you hear them burning. You may be tempted to increase the heat to make this happen faster. Resist the temptation! Browning the onions is not the same as caramelizing them.
  5. Stir occasionally until onions are a dark mahogany color and have reduced to approximately 2 cups. This should take 45 minutes to 1 hour.
  6. Add enough wine to cover the onions and turn heat to high, reducing the wine to a syrup consistency.
  7. Add consume, chicken broth, and bouquet garni. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  8. Reduce heat and simmer 15 to 20 minutes.
  9. Place oven rack in top ⅓ of oven and heat broiler.
  10. Cut country bread in rounds large enough to fit mouth of oven safe soup crocks. Place the slices on a baking sheet and place under broiler for 1 minute.
  11. Remove bouquet garni, and add the optional splash of Cognac.
  12. Ladle soup into crocks leaving one inch to the lip.
  13. Place bread round, toasted side down, on top of soup and top with grated cheese.
  14. Broil until cheese is bubbly and golden, 1 to 2 minutes.