Manda’s Back, and Manda Cooks: French Onion Soup

(please sing the following to the tune of Backstreet Boys – Backstreet’s Back)
omigod i’m back againnnnn
friends, sister, everybody read
gonna blog a little, maybe a lot
gonna show you what i cooked, show you what i bought

is the content original?
is this the only blog you should read?
probs not
is it worth reading for pico pics?
is it everything you need?
you better read this blog right now

read my blogggg
read my blog right now
mandalikes is back, alright

Hello! In case the beautifully written lyrics above weren’t clear enough, MandaLikes is BACK. I can practically hear the screams of excitements from all three of my readers!!

The last time I blogged was…. MARCH 10. The most notable things that have happened since then:
Got a kitten
Went to Italy
Changed jobs
I also went to 11 new restaurants, took 2 cooking classes, and got a kitten. Definitely more to come as far as the kitten is concerned (he is now a large bodied cat with a small head), and potentially more to come on the restaurants and classes (since now I have mad tapas skills and all).

Sunday night I made French Onion Soup for the first time, so let’s just dive into that, shall we?

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I’ve been wanting to make French Onion Soup ever since I scored some oven-safe bowls from the home sample closet at my last job. The bowls sat at my desk for a while, and then sat in my cabinet for a while, but last night was their time to shine! Brett and I didn’t have any plans last night, so I picked a recipe with the longest time commitment attached. I started around 3pm, and we ate around 7pm. Our apartment smelled like caramelizing onions the whole time, which was great. My hair and shirt smelled like onions hours after, which was not so great, but sometimes you have to make sacrifices in the name of delicious food.

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We ate the soup in front of the fire with a kale and brussels sprouts salad and large glasses of red wine, plus some extra cheesy croutons on the side (because why not?), and it was Cozy City, USA. I omitted sherry from the soup because I didn’t want to run to the store — I think I will add it next time, but the soup was delicious nonetheless.

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Here’s what you need:
4 yellow onions, chopped pole-to-pole
3 T butter, cut into small cubes
1.5 cups chicken broth
1.5 cups beef broth
1 small bunch thyme, tied together with cooking twine
salt & pepper
Demi baguette

Here’s what you do:
Coat inside of French Oven (that’s what the Le Creuset website calls them, and it sounds more sophisticated than Dutch Oven so that’s that) with a bit of olive oil, then throw chopped onions and butter in. Cover and place in oven at 375F for about an hour. When you remove from oven, the onions should be sweaty (kind of ew) and just starting to brown. Give the onions a stir, pop the lid a bit, and return to the oven for another 90 minutes. Remove from the oven and place on stove, over medium-high heat. The onions should be a medium brown, and there should be a dark brown oniony crust formed on the bottom and sides of the pan. Add ¼ cup of water, and try to scrape up some of the crust as the water steams. Cook for 6-8 minutes, until water absorbs. Repeat this 2-3 more times, until onions are dark brown. Add broths, and an additional cup of water, plus thyme and salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and let simmer for 30 minutes. While soup is simmering, slice baguette and toast in the oven for about 10 minutes. When you’re ready, remove the thyme, then split soup between two oven-safe bowls and place on baking sheet. Add a few baguette slices on top, plus sliced or shredded gruyere. Turn oven up to Broil, and pop soup in for 5-7 minutes, until cheese is melted. Let sit for a few minutes then enjoy!

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