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Old 12-13-2006, 06:27 AM   #11
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I agree with Vera Thyme is essential IMO as is a blade of Mace.
if you`re on a tiny budget why not buy a box of Oxo cubes, they last ages and usefull in sorts of things :)

Katherine Snow. xx
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Old 12-13-2006, 06:50 AM   #12
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I use chicken "stock" in mine because that is what I always have--and it lends a rich sweetness in my opinion. I sometimes use a dollop of Better than Bouillion Beef flavor for my salt addition, instead of granular salt.
It is easy to get a really good stock by buying a whole chicken, cover with water and simmer it. To get the most from your bird, in your situation,remove it after about 20 minutes and take off the breast meat and use for another purpose (pot pie, tetrazzini, etc.). Simmer the rest for another 45-60 minutes. You will have a rich wonderful stock. OR get leg quarters when they are on sale (often $0.39/lb.) and simmer them.

For serving with your cheese, I like to take baguette slices and top with a very generous amount of Swiss type cheese and put under the broiler to melt. Then float on the soup.

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Old 12-13-2006, 07:58 AM   #13
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Chopstix hit the nail on the head!! Properly, well carmelized onions and the best beef stock you can get your hands on. Homemade maybe! I also use a variety of onions...red, white, yellow. After that...if you like sherry, burgandy, marsala, brandy, by all means...go for it.
VeraBlue is right on target also!!
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Old 12-13-2006, 08:06 AM   #14
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MMmmmmmm, now I'm in the mood for onion soup.......thanks!
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Old 12-13-2006, 09:55 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by Michelemarie
MMmmmmmm, now I'm in the mood for onion soup.......thanks!
Me too -yum !!
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Old 12-13-2006, 11:24 AM   #16
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Everyone has had very good suggestions. The recipe you are using is sorta weird. I'd suggest using Andy's or something close to it.

I know that sometimes it's hard to cook on a budget, but you really do need to use stock and carmelize your onions to a deep golden hue for the soup to have any depth of flavor.
Less is not more. More is more and more is fabulous.
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Old 12-13-2006, 12:33 PM   #17
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BoyWithASpoon - do yourself a favor & try to find a copy of Julia Child's WayTo Cook.

Use her recipe for French Onion Soup & you won't need to experiment with any other recipes. I use chicken broth for mine, but otherwise her recipe is PERFECT, & nothing I've read here so far seems to top it.

Oh, & not to mention you can avoid all the stock nonsense. Good grief - French Onion Soup was & is supposed to be a relatively quick dish - not something that involved multiple steps involving producing all sorts of different stocks, etc., etc. In fact, it was invented as a curative after a hard "drinking" night out in France. These bistros weren't screwing around with veal stock - lol!!!!

I've been using Julia Child's recipe for over 25 years now (subbing chicken broth for beef), & still get raves for it. Do yourself a favor & try it. Faster, tastier, & easier than other onion soup brouhahas.
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Old 12-13-2006, 12:51 PM   #18
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The recipe I posted is one of Julia's with modifications. I've discovered she has published different versions of the same recipe.
"If you want to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first create the universe." -Carl Sagan
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Old 12-13-2006, 12:56 PM   #19
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and you Still can`t beat OXO cubes on a small budget for versatility :)

heh, If I won the Lottery I`de still buy them :P

(and they`de better Pay me this time for saying all that!)
Katherine Snow. xx
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Old 12-13-2006, 01:41 PM   #20
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Make French onion soup as a labor of love. Start with the bones, add some beef to get a very rich stock.

Then basically follow Julia's recipe, I think, I just make it now without too much thought.

But there was a challange we say in a magazine, and that was to come up with a quick version.

We tried a number of recipes, ate a lot of soup, and came up with this. We think it is pretty OK given the 30 minute time restriction (and then a family member became ill and we could not submit it, but it tastes good anyway.).

Slice thinly 1 Large onion and sauté in 2 Tablespoons of butter (at a minimum) in a 2 QT sauce pan until onions are soft and are starting to get browned, about 20 minutes. Yes, let them get a bit browned and caramelized.

Add one teaspoon of sugar (you can cheat a bit here, a little bit more won’t hurt.) and 1/4 - 1/2 teaspoon of dried thyme (to taste).

Add 1 Can of either condensed French Onion Soup or 1 Can Condensed Beef Bouillon (Campbells).

Dilute Soup or Bouillon with one can of low sodium chicken broth. The low sodium here is important because everything else that has been added is very salty.

Slowly simmer for about 5 minutes.

Transfer soup mixture to oven proof soup bowls.

Add several large garlic (or other flavored) croutons to the soup bowls.

Place 1/4 cup of shredded Emmenthaler/or Gruyere or/Swiss cheese on top of the floating croutons.

Place in 350 degree oven until cheese melts.

DO NOT USE PRE-SHREDDED CHEESE - It will not melt properly as they add chemicals (anti-caking) that prevents the cheese from sticking together.

Just our quick approach.


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