Apparently, I’m not as good as the cooks at Panera. I love French onion soup, so I decided to try to make it myself. I found a recipe online and set to work. I originally was going to make it Saturday, but after running errands all day and getting home from the store at 7 p.m., I decided it wasn’t going to happen. I also had dropped a bag holding the required bottle of white wine for the recipe in my apartment parking lot, so had to take another trip to the store. (I chose sauvignon blanc for the dry white wine the recipe asks for).
2 teaspoons olive oil
4 cups thinly vertically sliced Walla Walla or other sweet onion
4 cups thinly vertically sliced red onion
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4cup dry white wine
8 cups less-sodium beef broth
1/4 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
8(1-ounce) slices French bread, cut into 1-inch cubes
8 (1-ounce) slices reduced-fat, reduced-sodium Swiss cheese (such as Alpine Lace)
Heat olive oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onions to pan; sauté for 5 minutes or until tender. Stir in sugar, pepper, and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Reduce heat to medium; cook 20 minutes, stirring frequently. Increase heat to medium-high, and sauté for 5 minutes or until onion is golden brown. Stir in wine, and cook for 1 minute. Add broth and thyme; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 2 hours. Preheat broiler. Place bread in a single layer on a baking sheet; broil 2 minutes or until toasted, turning after 1 minute. Place 8 oven proof bowls on a jelly-roll pan. Ladle 1 cup soup into each bowl. Divide bread evenly among bowls; top each serving with 1 cheese slice. Broil 3 minutes or until cheese begins to brown.
Well, my first problem was I didn’t know what a dutch oven was, so like any good 24-year-old, I called my mom, who told me all I needed was a big pot. The second problem was my choice of ingredients. The recipe calls for low sodium beef broth. I forgot to pick some up, so I figured I would just make the broth from bullion cubes. I later discovered there was probably a reason the recipe called for low sodium broth. If my goal was to up my sodium intake by five-fold, I probably did that. It definitely needs watered down if I decide to brave the leftovers. At least the wine was good.