French Onion Soup with an Italian Attitude
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons butter
6 medium onions, thinly sliced
salt and black pepper
leaves from one sprig of rosemary, finely chopped
1/2 pint grape tomatoes, halved
10 leaves fresh basil, chopped
1/4 cup grated paremsan cheese
4 thick sliced crusty bread -- I used croutons instead, a big handful for each bowl
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup white wine
6 cups beef stock
8 slices fresh mozzarella cheese -- I used a shredded Italian 6 cheese blend
- Preheat broiler (I used the oven at 450, because that was the highest suggested temperature for my bowls.)
- Heat a deep pot over medium to medium-high heat. Add the olive oil and butter to the pot. When the butter melts start adding the onions as you slice them.
- Season the onions with salt, pepper and the rosemary. Cook the onions for 15-18 minutes, until tender, sweet and caramelized, stirring frequently. If they start to burn add a splash of water and continue stirring.
- While the onions are cooking, make the topping. In a small bowl, combine the grape tomatoes, basil, grated cheese, salt and pepper.
- Under the broiler toast the bread until golden; rub each side with the garlic clove. (I used croutons so I skipped this step.)
- Once the onions are done, add the balsamic vinegar and white wine, stirring up all the brown bits from the bottom of the pot. add the stock and over the pot to bring to a quick boil.
- Arrange 4 soup bowls or crocks on a cookie sheet. Once the soup reaches a boil, ladle it into the bowls. Float the brea (or croutons) on the soup and cover with a mound of the tomato mixture. Top with two slices of the cheese. Slide the cookie sheet under the broiler until the cheese melts and bubbles.