Gosh ... I look at the bottom of the recipe printout and see that I've had this since late 1998 .... wow!
I've made this specific recipe a few times, but then I get distracted with a newer recipe and try that ... and ALWAYS have to listen to Hubby ask why I don't just stick with the first one I have... he's right.
So, Saturday, it was a nice, sunny, BEAUTIFUL day, high of around 86. But the nights are getting a little cooler, and this morning it was 72 when I went outside at 8am ... hence, it's FALL TIME in Paradise, time to make soups!
The sprinkler dudes were here making repairs, and since they were digging up in the back yard, I didn't really want to toss on the ole bikini and jump in the pool to float ... just not my idea of cheap thrills, you know? ;-)
So, again, I made soup. AND I used what we had on hand ... it's a miracle, don't you agree?!
Here's what you need ....
3 lbs of onions, make sure ONE is a sweet onion, and ONE is a red onion
1/2 pound smoked bacon
2 tbs thyme
12 cups beef stock
1/2 cup dry vermouth or white wine
1 tbs sea salt
black pepper to taste
1 tbs dry sherry
6 ounces sliced provolone, gruyere or mozz cheese (whatever you have will work)
6 slices of baguette or other thick bread
Cut your bacon up in 1/2 inch or so pieces and cook in a LARGE heavy bottom pot til crispy.
While bacon is cooking, slice your onions thin, thin, thin. I use a mandoline, and I asked Hubby how on earth I sliced all those onions back in the day so thin before I had this thing? He said it wasn't pretty ... hmmm ... I think I need to hold back a bowl of soup from him ...
Remove bacon to a lined bowl to drain and toss the onion slices in, on top of the bacon fat, add the 2 tbs thyme. Give a quick stir to mix everything up and then let the onions sit there, undisturbed for about 10 minutes, give them them a quick stir again and really leave them alone for about 20 minutes so they can caramelized. The secret is to NOT TOUCH the onions ... hard as it may be.
Once onions are caramelized, pour in the 1/2 cup of vermouth to deglaze. Allow to cook a minute or so and then pour in the broth and season with salt and pepper.
Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to a simmer. NOW, add in your bacon and sherry. Let simmer for 45 minutes to an hour and marvel at the lovely, deep color of the broth. Yummm.
When ready to serve:
Toast the slices of bread under broiler. NOTE: I always drizzle a bit of olive oil on the bread just to give it a little more 'richness'
Place oven proof bowls on a baking tray.
Place bread slice in bowl, ladle a generous portion of soup over the top. Add a slice of cheese carefully over the top of the soup.
Place in oven under broiler until cheese is melted and bubbly, 2 to 3 minutes. Serve up and warn everyone that a) the bowl is HOT and b) the SOUP is hot ...
Looking forward to sharing with some of these GREAT Parties ... go check them out!
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