Dark & Smoky Caramelized Onion Gouda Soup
My dad grew some beautiful onions in his garden this year … great big yellow onions, the good kind for storage that will keep all winter and into the spring until there are new onions from the garden. He has big wire buckets full of these gorgeous onions and encourages me to take some every time I visit. So I did. And with all those beautiful onions in my pantry, well, I just couldn’t help but think of onion soup, one of my very favorite soups in the world. I’ve been in love with French onion soup for as long as I can remember, and then I discovered Italian onion soup Carabaccia, with a spiced red wine broth instead of the white wine used in the French version and that was just as enticing.
This time I wanted to make something a little different, still with all the lovely caramelized onions and the toasty cheesy bread on top, but not quite the same as the onion soups I’ve done before. I decided to use red wine like the Italians do, but with a bit of smoky flavor from smoked Gouda cheese. I added a bit of rosemary just because it seemed like the soup wanted rosemary. The broth came out a deep red brown, so dark and so flavorful. With the caramelized onions hiding inside and the toast to soak up the juices, all soft and gooey on the bottom and a little crisp with lots of smoky melty cheese on the top … ah! Perfection in a bowl.
It is such a comforting soup … it cheered me and helped chase away the cold that has been haunting me, on and off, for weeks. Onions are so good for your health. I caramelized my onions the old-fashioned way, on the stove top with lots of stirring, but if you want a simpler method (takes longer, but less tending), you can use this recipe from Full Belly Sisters for Crockpot Caramelized Onions, and just add as many to the soup as you think it needs. Make sure your bread is sliced very thin. You will be amazed at how much a thin slice of bread expands when it soaks up the broth from the soup.
- 4 medium yellow onions, peeled & sliced very thin (about 1.25 lb. after peeling)
- 1 teaspoon butter
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 1/4 cup red wine (I used Italian Borolo)
- 3 1/2 cups beef broth
- 1 bay leaf
- 1/2 cup red wine
- a few fresh rosemary leaves, chopped fine (about 1/4 - 1/2 teaspoon)
- Very thin slices of bread, toasted
- Shredded smoked gouda and smoked provolone cheese, mixed
- Peel and slice the onions very thin.
- Set a medium saucepan or soup pot over medium heat. Add the butter and olive oil, then the onions. Cover and cook for a few minutes, then stir. Repeat several times. When the onions are getting very tender, start stirring them more. Once the liquid seems to have evaporated from the onions, add a Tablespoon of red wine. Stir and cook until the wine has dissolved and the onions are starting to brown. Repeat until the wine is gone. Keep cooking and stirring the onions until they start to brown and caramelize, about 30 minutes total.
- Stir in the beef broth, the bay leaf, red wine and rosemary. Bring to a boil, cover and reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 15 minutes or so. Add salt & fresh ground pepper to taste, if needed. Preheat the oven to 400 F.
- Ladle the soup into oven proof bowls. Cut the bread as thin as possible and toast the slices nice and brown and crisp. Set a slice of toast on each bowl and top with smoked gouda to cover the bread and some smoked provolone cheese mounded on top of that. Set the bowls in the oven and bake for 15 - 20 minutes or until the cheese is melted and bubbly, and possibly even a little browned on top. Remove the oven hot bowls from the oven carefully, using oven mitts to protect your hands. Serve hot, reminding everyone not to touch the hot hot bowls.
The soup yields over a quart of soup ... the number of servings depends on the size of the soup bowls.
RECIPE SOURCE: http://www.sumptuousspoonfuls.com/
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This recipe was shared at Simple Supper Tuesday, Treasure Box Tuesday, Thursday Favorite Things, Let’s Get Real, Foodie Fridays, Freedom Fridays, Foodie Friends Friday, PureBlogLove, What to Do Weekends, The Weekend Social and Project Parade.