French Onion Soup with Pepperjack Croutons

I love French Onion Soup.  If I had to pick one soup to eat for the rest of my life, this would be it.  It’s sweet, it’s tasty and how can you go wrong when you add bread and loads of cheese?  Seriously, this is it for me.  The end all, be all of soup.

I was contacted by a local follower of Farmgirl Gourmet asking if I’d be interested in some Walla Walla Sweet onions.  Well “heck ya” I thought.  I love onions.  Love them.  So we made plans to meet at my house since she was planning to be in the area.  When she handed me the bag of these giant beauties I about fainted.  They were gigantic, perfect orbs of onion goodness.  How awesome is that?  The onions I grew this year were small and so I blew through them in no time flat.  What a treat to be presented with these giants.

Terri is a local farmer and she also does floral design for weddings and events.  You should check out her site at Coulee Creek Florals.  She’s one talented lady….and a sweetheart onion gifter!  🙂

So now that I had these amazing onions, I had to figure out what to do with them.  French Onion soup came top of mind.  This recipe is uber easy, but does take some time, so you’ll need to be around to stir occasionally for 4 hours.  So make it on Sunday while you’re hanging out watching the football games.

Start off with a tablespoon of butter in a large dutch oven.

Next add in 4-5 large onions and 2 large shallots and 2 teaspoons of kosher salt and a few dashes of black pepper (or 8-9 medium onions and 4-5 shallots).  The pot will be filled to the gills with onions and this is just fine, they cook down considerably in a short time.  Give them a good stir to coat with the butter then put on the lid, turn it down to medium low and go watch the football game for a while.  You’ll want to stir every 20 or 30 minutes and make sure it’s not burning.  The onions will start to release a lot of water, don’t fret, it will all cook down.

This is what the onions look like after 4 hours of caramelizing!  Amazing how an entire pot of onions can now be so minimal, but don’t discount the amazing complexity of flavor this small amount of onions will have.  Mmmm!

Turn up the heat to high and add in 7 cups of water, 1/2 cup red wine, 1/4 cup red wine vinegar.  Bring it to a boil and then taste for salt and pepper.  Mine needed about another teaspoon of salt.  But I like my salt.  Once the seasoning is right, it’s ready for ladling into bowls.

Top with baguette that’s been toasted in the oven for about 20 minutes.  This creates a good crust on the bread so it doesn’t absorb all of the soup and become mushy.  Top with 1/3 cup of cheese (I used pepperjack) like Gruyere or swiss and pop under the broiler for about 1 minute or until the cheese is melted and bubbly.  Remove and serve immediately.

French Onion Soup with Pepperjack Croutons

Yield: Makes 4 Servings

A French classic recipe for French Onion Soup kicked up with spicy pepperjack croutons.

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 10 cups sliced onions, preferably sweet onions (about 8-10 medium sized)
  • 2 cups sliced shallots, about 4-5
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 7 cups water
  • 1/2 cup red wine
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • baguette slices
  • 2 cups shredded cheese (gruyere, pepperjack, swiss)

Instructions

  1. Melt butter in a large heavy dutch oven over medium high heat. Add the onions, shallots and salt and stir to combine. Cover with the lid and turn the heat down to medium low. Cook the onions for 4 hours, stirring occasionally so they don't burn. Turn down the heat if they are cooking too quickly. The onions will release a lot of water and this is OK, continue to let them cook until they are a deep golden brown in color and reduced to a thin layer on the bottom of the pot.
  2. Meanwhile, toast baguette slices on a baking sheet in a 350 degree oven for 20 minutes. Remove and set aside.
  3. Once the onions are a deep golden brown, turn the heat up to high and add the water, red wine and vinegar. Stir to incorporate and bring to a boil. Taste for seasoning. Add more salt and pepper if necessary.
  4. Preheat the broiler. Ladle soup into 4 bowls, top with the toasted baguette slices and 1/2 cup cheese on each. Place under the broiler for 1-2 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and bubbling. Remove immediately and serve.
http://www.farmgirlgourmet.com/2011/11/french-onion-soup-with-pepperjack.html

16 Comments

  • Reply
    Anonymous
    February 4, 2012 at 9:05 am

    I think I may have cooked them down a bit too much (ok, a lot too much) and so when I added the half cup it was a little too much wine. It did cook out and turned brown. Next time I’ll pay more attention to the time and also use white wine and a little chicken stock instead of all water. This recipe is the closet I’ve found to get us to the one we had while in a little neighborhood bistro in Paris, so thank you! It was great to be transported back to one of those fav places, fav meals!

  • Reply
    Farmgirl Gourmet
    January 23, 2012 at 6:40 pm

    I don’t know why it turned pink!! That’s a bummer. Did you use 1/2 cup? Maybe next time just use white wine? I’m perplexed! Sorry. 🙁

  • Reply
    Anonymous
    January 22, 2012 at 4:56 pm

    Mine turned pink after I added the red wine. Did I do something wrong? Yours doesn’t look pink and looks very thick. Mine isn’t. I do like this recipe though, its more the authenic simple real french cooking.

  • Reply
    Zia Elle
    November 22, 2011 at 6:49 am

    I’m in love with french onion soup!!
    Your one look delicious, great job!!

  • Reply
    Denise @ Creative Kitchen
    November 18, 2011 at 11:23 am

    Love french onion soup….haven’t made it, but wanted to blog about it soon. Might just have to make your recipe!! You make it look SO easy!! 🙂

    After 6 weeks helping hubby start up our business, I finally have a bit of time to get back to my blogging.

    Just hosting my first giveaway so stop on by!

    Have missed my friends,
    Denise @ Creative Kitchen

  • Reply
    Priscilla - She's Cookin'
    November 15, 2011 at 9:45 pm

    Love onion soup and haven’t made it in ages either! I’m sure those beautiful walla walla onions made it extra special, not to mention pepper jack croutons 🙂

  • Reply
    diabeticFoodie
    November 15, 2011 at 6:26 am

    I haven’t made French Onion Soup in ages, but you’ve inspired me!

  • Reply
    Elizebeth
    November 14, 2011 at 4:55 am

    I love French Onion Soup!! And I’ve added your recipe to my collection. A glass of wine and a salad–perfect dinner.

  • Reply
    Joyful
    November 13, 2011 at 10:42 pm

    I can almost taste the soup. I love French Onion soup and I really should learn to make it 😉

  • Reply
    janet@cupcakestocaviar
    November 13, 2011 at 2:39 pm

    Oh my, this looks sooooo good! French Onion soup is my all time favorite soup. Your version looks delicious!

  • Reply
    Karen
    November 13, 2011 at 1:52 pm

    I LOVE French onion soup but for some reason I have never made it. This definitely has me craving it now…that pot of onions looks just amazing. And I really like the pepper jack twist with the cheese. Spicy=good!

  • Reply
    foodwanderings
    November 12, 2011 at 8:15 am

    I love French onion soup and love that you used both red and yellow onions. I don’t make it often since my guys aren’t huge fans but it is one of my absolute favorites. I get always disappointed when they all over don’t like it again, maybe I will give yours a go and see they might have changed their minds:) or just make some for me so I don’t order it from outside:)

  • Reply
    Terri @ Coulee Creek Florals
    November 11, 2011 at 10:36 pm

    Thanks for the shout out! You are very welcome—and you did my onions proud! I still have lots left, so I will make this very soon.
    Terri

  • Reply
    Maris
    November 11, 2011 at 3:34 pm

    Yum! That looks perfect for a chilly fall night!

  • Reply
    Nelly Rodriguez
    November 11, 2011 at 3:10 pm

    I need some french onion soup in my life. Mmhm, warm brothy soups are amazing, and better with bread and melted cheese. This is actually Murray’s favorite soup!

  • Reply
    BigFatBaker
    November 11, 2011 at 2:52 pm

    Love it. French onion is one of my all time favorites too. But, I have never made it before. I always thought it would be difficult. Your recipe sounds great and I can’t wait to try it! And I am so jealous of your walla walla gift! They are an exotic onion where I’m at….

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