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Recipe Swap: French Onion Soup

I tend to be picky when it comes to soup, which is precisely the reason I signed up for this round of the What's Cooking board recipe swap. I thought it would force me to try something new.

Instead, I received a recipe for French Onion Soup from Colleen's Kitchen Therapy, which, aside from my creamy pumpkin soup, is one of my favorite soups! I've never made it at home, though, so I was still very excited.

The recipe did not disappoint! It tasted just like the French onion soup at my favorite diner, The Great American (locations in Bensalem and Langhorne, PA). Definitely don't skip the brandy in this recipe. I'm not a fan of drinking straight brandy, but it really complements the beef broth in the soup. 

French Onion Soup
Recipe by Colleen's Kitchen Therapy
Yield: 2 large servings


  • 1 ½ pounds yellow onions
  • 1 ½ tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 ½ teaspoon olive oil
  • pinch sugar
  • ⅓ cup brandy (I used Christian Brothers)
  • ¾ cup dry white wine (I used Yellow Tail Chardonnay)
  • 32 ounces low-sodium beef broth
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 thick slices bread, toasted
  • ½ cup shredded Gruyère cheese (or a combination of Gruyère and Gouda)


  1. Melt the butter and oil together in the bottom of a large stock pot over moderately low heat. Add the onions, toss to coat them in oil and cover the pot.
  2. Reduce the heat to low and let them simmer for 15 minutes. Uncover the pot, add the sugar and raise the heat to medium. Cook for 40-45 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onions caramelize and turn golden brown, adding more butter or oil, a teaspoon at a time, if necessary to prevent the onions from burning.
  3. Add the brandy, scraping the bottom of the pot to loosen any brown bits in the bottom of the pan and simmer for 5 minutes. Add the white wine and simmer for 15 more minutes. Add in the beef broth and salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer uncovered for 20 minutes. Taste and adjust the seasoning as necessary.
  4. Preheat the broiler with a rack 5 inches below the heating element. Ladle the soup into oven safe bowls. Top each both with a piece of the toasted bread and a heaping mound of the cheese mixture. Broil for 3 to 5 minutes until the cheese is melted and bubbly. Serve immediately.

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Colleen Schenk

Tuesday 28th of February 2012

I am so glad you liked it! It has definitely become a favorite in my home!

The Home Cook

Friday 24th of February 2012

Too funny! I'm sorry you didn't get to try something new but making something you love at home is just as good. :)

Thanks for being part of the recipe swaps!

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