You know… like 9 hours.
But! At least this time you won’t have to cover your entire kitchen in flour, spend four days digging dough out from under your nails, scrub melted burned butter off the bottom of your oven and give the entire recipe you made to someone else because you can’t be trusted around it.
This time you can just throw it in a big pot and forget about it.
And drink beer while you’re at it. Winning!
I can’t believe there was a time in my life that I didn’t think I liked onions. I don’t even know how it is possible for someone who loves food to not like onions because they add a ridiculous amount of delicious flavor in so many different ways to so many different dishes.
And even though I used to think I didn’t care for them?
I still ordered french onion soup anyway. I’m sure you know why. The cheeeeese. And the bread. I distinctly remember sitting at a restaurant a few years ago and the server bringing one of our dining neighbors a piping bowl of soup with golden cheese just literally pouring down the sides.
All I could think was…
For years after, I ordered french onion soup… and only ate the bread and cheese. I’d dig my spoon down in half way, grabbing a bite of toasted bread, a spoonful of broth, and strands upon strands of gruyere or gouda. I’d always finish everything in the bowl, except for the big pile of caramelized onions on the bottom.
I liked that set up. I liked it a lot.
Then, as I’ve detailed before – much like his Diet Mountain Dew habit, my husband developed an addiction to caramelized onions and asked for them on everything. Even weirdo things like pasta and eggs. I seriously think I made them nearly every day for three months. I first tried them on a burger, slathered in cheese and ketchup of course. Then we moved on to steak, and once I even put them in a salad… that sort of tasted good. Just don’t try it hungover.
Caramely onions? I could do this.
After all, if there was any vegetable for me to learn to love, it had to be the one filled with sugar that softened and sweetened easily and almost tasted candy-like at times, right? Right on.
So hopefully by this point I don’t have to do any convincing and we can let this cheese do the talking.
And if you stillll don’t like onions? Make this anyway and just eat the bread and cheese and broth like I did circa 1999. Totally worth it.
Crockpot French Onion Soup
[adapted from Tyler Florence]
makes a giant pot, about 8-10 servings
4 medium sweet onions, thinly sliced
3 garlic cloves, minced
4 tablespoons of butter
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar (I used my favorite Fustinis!)
2 tablespoons brown sugar
3 tablespoons flour
8 ounces of beer
64 ounces of low-sodium beef stock
2 tablespoons fresh thyme
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt
gruyere cheese, sliced
Set your crock pot on high, then add onions, garlic, brown sugar, butter, salt and balsamic and mix until combined. Cover and let cook for 60 minutes, stirring occasionally, until onions are a bit caramely and brown on the edges. Add in flour, then stir thoroughly and let sit for 5 minutes. Add in beer, beef stock, thyme, and pepper, then turn heat down to low, cover and cook for 6-8 hours.
Before serving, cut french bread or baguette into slices. Fill soup bowls to the top, then cover with slice of bread and a slice of cheese. Set under the broiler for 2-3 minutes, or until cheese is bubbly and golden brown. Be careful when serving as bowls will be hot!
Note: I used a very low-sodium beef stock, so depending on the stock you use, add additional salt for flavor if desired.
I want to live inside that bowl.