Thursday, December 23, 2010

French Onion Soup

Years ago, I decided I hated cooking up a big
meal for extended family on Christmas Eve.
That's when I began our
French Onion Soup tradition.

I serve this every Christmas Eve and everyone
brings appetizers and sweets.

I make this several days ahead and serve
it again on New Year's.

I serve up to 30 people with this
whopper recipe, but you can
cut it in half or fourths for less people.

French Onion Soup for 30!

10 large yellow onions sliced.
1/4 cup sugar
2 Tbs. Dijon mustard
3-4 Tbs. Worcestershire sauce
5  32-oz. cartons beef broth
Provolone cheese discs
Garlic or onion flavored croutons

Start by peeling the onions.

Cut them into fourths...

And slice in a food processor.
For years, I sliced these by hand and
If you must slice them by hand,
place a cutting board in your sink
and slice onions under
cold running water to cut down on crying.

Do this in batches.

While you're slicing the onions,
have a stick of butter melting in
a large stock pot over medium heat.

As you slice,
add the onions to the melted butter.

The ten onions fill my large stock pot
3/4th full!!!  You will think you have
way too many onions...but you don't.
You'll see later.

Sprinkle with the sugar which will sweeten up the
onions and help them carmelize.

Stir this into the onions to distribute.

It takes about an hour to cook down the onions.
(Not as long for lesser amounts.)
Stir from the bottom every 10-15 minutes.

Tip: Run your exhaust fan to help eliminate the odor.

Cook until onions are golden and carmelized.
Look how much they shrunk they
only fill the bottom fourth of the stock pot.

Add the mustard and worcestershire sauce.

Stir in the beef broth, raise heat to high
 and bring to a low simmer.

Ladle soup into oven-safe bowls.

Sprinkle on the croutons.

Top with two discs of provolone cheese.
I like the taste of this cheese and the fact it
comes in ROUND slices that fit my bowls.
You can also use mozzarella slices.

Place under broiler until golden and bubbly like the picture above.

I only make it this one time a year
so it is special.

But you can make it any time.

Here's some of the family enjoying
our tradition on Christmas Eve!

I even bought special bowls and hot pad holders
so the family doesn't miss the big turkey dinner.

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