French Onion Soup


French Onion Soup

Hesslebach's Contribution:

The Hesslebach Dutch Oven, with its excellent heat distribution and retention properties, provides even cooking and complete heat control. This is ideal for sautéing onions to achieve a deep caramelization and for maintaining the low and steady temperatures needed for simmering French Onion Soup to perfection.


  • 4 large yellow onions, thinly sliced
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 6 cups beef broth
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 4 sprigs fresh thyme
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • Baguette slices, toasted
  • 2 cups Gruyère cheese, grated
  • Onion Caramelization: Key to great French onion soup is deeply caramelizing the onions.
  • Broth Choice: High quality beef broth for deep and rich flavor or a robust vegetable broth for a vegetarian version.
  • Final Thoughts: Take your time caramelizing your onions at medium to low heat. You will be rewarded with a rich and complex flavored soup.

1. Caramelizing the Onions:

  • In a large pot, melt butter and olive oil together. Add sliced onions, sugar, and salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until onions are deeply caramelized.

2. Building the Soup Base:

  • Sprinkle flour over the caramelized onions, stirring to coat. Cook for a few minutes to eliminate the raw flour taste.
  • Gradually add the beef broth and white wine, stirring continuously, ensuring a smooth, lump-free incorporation.
  • Add bay leaves and thyme sprigs. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes to allow the flavors to meld.

3. Preparing the Bread:

  • Toast the baguette slices until they are crisp and golden.

4. Assembling and Broiling the Soup:

  • Remove the bay leaves and thyme from the soup.
  • Ladle the hot soup into ovenproof bowls. Place a toasted baguette slice on top of each bowl of soup.
  • Generously sprinkle grated Gruyère over the bread in each bowl.
  • Place the bowls under the broiler until the cheese is bubbly and golden brown.

5. Serving:

  • Serve the French Onion Soup hot, allowing the melted cheese and toasted bread to mix lovingly with the rich, onion-filled broth beneath.

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