Friday Feedbag: Easy French Onion Soup

I’m not a big soup fan, but when the weather turns chilly and wet, like it is here right now, not much is better to warm you right up. We have a close family friend who loves French onion soup and begs me to make my version almost every time we get together. It’s so quick and easy and so, so good.

Easy French Onion Soup
(modified from a Rachael Ray recipe)

1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons butter
6 medium onions, thinly sliced
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 bay leaf, fresh or dried
1/2 cup dry sherry
6 cups beef broth or stock
4 thick slices crusty bread, cut into 1-inch chunks and toasted
About 2 cups shredded cheese (I like smoked gouda)

Heat a deep (soup) pot over medium-high heat. Add oil and butter and stir to melt, then add onions. Season with salt, pepper, and thyme. Cook onions about 15 minutes, stirring frequently, until caramel colored. Add bay leaf and sherry and deglaze. Add broth, cover pot, and bring just to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer about 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Arrange four small, deep soup bowls or crocks on a cookie sheet. Preheat broiler to high. Place bread in bowls and ladle soup over. Cover each bowl with a mound of cheese. Place cookie sheet with soup bowls on it under hot broiler until cheese melts and bubbles. Remove and serve immediately (and carefully!).

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