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[Warning: Pictures do not do justice to this rich concoction!]

Hallelujah! The onions abound. One never tires of this absolute staple, which is easily stored in the refrigerator or a cold pantry. Or so one thinks until they spill out the door. So into the pot they go!

I am rarely 100% satisfied with a dish I cook; inevitable when you can’t follow directions. This, however, I’m really quite pleased with! My taste buds were singing! Bobby’s too! Haaaaallelujah! Hallelujah, hallelujah!

Plating wars. Which is prettier (ignore the burnt tips)?
Plating wars. Which is prettier (ignore the burnt tips)?

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Better than bouillon. Not ideal - home-made stock is better, but still a satisfactory substitute and did not affect the quality of this broth in the slightest!
Better than bouillon. Not ideal – home-made stock is better, but still a satisfactory substitute and did not affect the quality of this broth in the slightest!

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Burned, but still delectable! Hey, it happens. Just scrape off the char with a knife, or try again!
Burned, but still delectable! Hey, it happens. Just scrape off the char with a knife, or try again!

 

Ithaca Onion Soup

Yield: 4 servings

Time: Surprisingly minimal preparation. It's mostly about watching and stirring.

Ingredients

  • 4 medium to large yellow onions, sliced
  • 1 large clove garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 4-5 sprigs thyme
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1 ounce red wine
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 3 1/2 cups vegetable stock
  • .10 pound Filet Mignon, cubed
  • 2 thick slices of rye bread
  • 1 cup, thickly grated cheddar cheese

Instructions

  1. In a soup pot, melt the butter on medium-high heat. Add the onions and garlic, and saute until translucent. Add the olive oil, thyme, salt, and pepper, and stir. Cover with a lid and allow to simmer for 45-50 minutes over medium heat. Stir occasionally. The onions will reduce to about half their original volume. Add the wine and continue to reduce the onions, uncovered, for 15 more minutes. Add 1 tablespoon of flour at a time, stirring after each addition. When the mixture is thick and the flour fully dissolved, add the broth. Stir and cover. Continue and simmer over low heat while you prepare the Filet Mignong.
  2. Slice the Filet Mignon into cubes. Sear in a hot iron skillet in its own juices. Stir to prevent from sticking. When cooked rare and tender, remove from heat and add to the soup pot. Continue simmering the soup while you prepare the bread and cheese.
  3. Turn the oven broiler on to low. Cut the bread into slices and position on a baking sheet. Sprinkle half of the grated cheese on top of each slice. Place in the oven and broil until the cheese is golden brown and bubbling. Careful not to burn like I did on the first round!
  4. Ladle the soup into two bowls and add a few pieces of bread on top, submerging just barely into the broth. Sprinkle the remaining cheese on top - it will melt when it hits the soup.
  5. * I know it seems pretentious and absurd to use Filet Mignon in a soup, but we had a teeny packet (.10 lb.) from our beef share; truly too small for another dish. We thought this would top off the flavor, creating a truly indulgent, decadent broth. And it did!

Notes

Allergens: dairy

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