Vadalia Onion Soup

2010-01-20

Soup production is back in full swing in our house now that the winter months are here. The decision is always which one to make this time. I often look to the many soups already posted in our database. The list of flavors range from Acorn Squash and Apple soup to Zucchini soup. However, when I am not surfing the web for a soup recipe, my favorite soup cookbook, the New England Soup Factory Cookbook is what I grab from the bookshelf. I have yet to make a soup from this book that was not a keeper. I am not sure if it still remains in print.

Monday evening I turned to page 12 for a favorite of ours, Vadalia Onion soup. It is very similar to a standard french onion soup, but with added sweetness from the onions and tomato paste. If you find it too sweet, you can cut back on the tomato paste. It has always been a hit with our guests and family. The picture below is shown without the cheese so you can see the texture and color of the soup.

Recipe

6 tbsp salted butter
8 large Vidalia onions, sliced
3 cloves garlic, peeled and sliced
2 cups cream sherry, divided
3 tbsp tomato paste
16 cups beef stock
2 bay leaves
1 tbsp cornstarch dissolved in 3 tbsp water
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
salt and pepper to taste
croutons
grated Gruyere cheese

In a stockpot melt the butter over medium heat. Add the onions and saute for 20 minutes, stirring frequently to keep from sticking. Add garlic and continue to saute for 20 more minutes. Add 1 cup of the sherry. Deglaze the pan, stirring to loosen the cooked pieces at the bottom. Add the remaining 1 cup sherry, tomato paste, beef stock, and bay leaves. Increase heat to med-high and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and simmer for 1 hour. Add corn starch mixture and increase heat to high. Turn off the heat adding the vinegar and salt and pepper.

Remove the bay leaves. Ladle into soup bowls or a large ramekins. Add croutons on top and then cheese. Put bowls on a cooking sheet and place under broiler until cheese is bubbly and brown.

Note: If you buy the onions at Costco, those are jumbo not large.

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