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French Onion Soup

From Martha Stewart

Author/Submitted by: Martha Stewart
Servings: 6
Categories: Alcohol / Cheese / Pork / Soups

Ingredients:
1/2  pound  smoked bacon, cut in 1/2" pieces
3  pounds  onions, thinly sliced; see notes
2  tablespoons  fresh thyme, picked
8  cups  beef stock
1/2  cup  dry vermouth or white wine
1  tablespoon  coarse salt
    black pepper
6  slices  white country-style bread, sliced 1/2" thick
1  tablespoon  dry sherry
6  ounces  Gruyere cheese, thinly sliced
6  sprigs  fresh thyme, for garnish

Directions:
1. In a heavy large pot over medium heat, saute bacon until fat is rendered and bacon is crispy, about 5 to 6 minutes. Transfer bacon to a paper towel to drain. Set aside.

2. Saute onions and thyme in remaining bacon fat in pan until well caramelized, stirring occasionally, about 25 to 30 minutes. Deglaze with vermouth, and cook about 1 minute. Add stock and salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, make croutons by toasting bread slices under broiler or in toaster, until golden.

3. Heat broiler. Add 1/2 teaspoon sherry and one crouton to each soup bowl. Sprinkle each crouton with 2 tablespoons of the reserved bacon. Ladle soup into bowls, top with Gruyere and place on a baking pan. Transfer to oven, and broil until cheese is melted and bubbly, about 2 to 3 minutes. Garnish with thyme sprigs.

Onions: Use red, white, and yellow, making sure one onion is of a sweet variety, such as Vidalia or Maui


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