Indeed inventive additions like soya sauce in the broth and over the the top croissant croutons instead of your standard baguette ones quickly dispelled my initial reservation and on a particular grey and rainy Saturday night I made my own version and wow it did not disappoint!
A real game changer here were Oxo's vegan "beef" flavoured stock cubes (available at Sainsbury's and Waitrose) which tasted so rich and beef like that I couldn't quite believe they were fully vegan, enabling a non meat eater to still achieve that wonderfully rich broth an onion soup is all about.
Onions are slow cooked, don't rush this step, red wine injected for further flavour until the broth gets added, and everything simmers for a good 45 minutes, yes, not a quick dinner but so worth taken the time for.
The final bowl comes with lashings of grated and melted Gruyere cheese and buttery chunks of croissants croutons, croissants cut into bite sized pieces and quickly crisped up in the oven before they adorn the top of the soup.
Sophisticated yet like a hug in a dish and honestly the best onion soup I have had in my life, even when compared to those I had Paris, so I eat my words and indeed your soup Ms Teigen, you are a damn fine cook, celebrity or not!
Serves 2 as main course
- 3 Tablespoons Olive Oil
- 5 Tablespoons Butter
- 10 Cups Thinly Sliced Onions
- 5 Thyme Springs, Tied Into A Bundle With Kitchen Twine
- 8 Cloves Garlic, Thinly Sliced
- 2 Tablespoon All-Purpose Flour
- 1 ¼ Cups Dry Red Wine
- 6 Cups Beef Broth (or the amazing Vegan alternative I used)
- 1 ½ Tablespoon Soy Sauce
- Kosher Salt
- 2 Large Croissants, Cut Into 1 ½ Inch Cubes
- 2 cups grated Gruyère
- Heat the oil and 5 tablespoons of butter in a big saucepan on high heat till melted.
- Add your thinly sliced onions and thyme bundle and cook.
- Stir often for about 15 minutes until the onions are still light in color and begin to shrink.
- Reduce the heat to medium-low and add the thinly sliced garlic.
- Cook another 20 minutes (give or take), stirring often, until the onions are a deep golden color and tender. Watch the color more than the clock.
- If you noticed some onions are browning more than others, stir more frequently.
- You want all your onions to be an even golden brown.
- Next, add the 2 tablespoons of flour and stir until it coats all the onions for about 3 minutes, until they have a dull appearance.
- Now ADD THE WINE!
- Increase the heat to medium and bring to a boil.
- Cook the onions for about 5 minutes until they are purple and almost all the wine has evaporated.
- Take out the thyme bundle and throw it away.
- Add your beef broth, soy sauce (DON’T skip this ingredient), and 1 teaspoon of salt.
- Bring to a boil over high heat then reduce heat to a gentle simmer.
- Continue to simmer until the soup has thickened and the onions are no longer purple, about 45 minutes. Season with salt to taste.
- Preheat the oven to 180 degrees celsius.
- Spread out the croissant pieces on a baking sheet and bake for about 7 minutes until golden. Remove from oven and crank up your grill.
- Arrange your soup bowls on a baking tray.
- Add a handful of Gruyère cheese to the the bottom of each soup bowl.
- Ladle soup over cheese and add your croissant.
- Top off with more grated cheese.
- Grill until cheese is bubbly about 3 or 4 minutes.
- Now sit down and enjoy the best soup of your life.