I can't exactly call this French Onion Soup, as it's not the traditional sodium-laden version, but here's my healthier take on the nourishing, delicious, and low-calorie soup d'jour.
16 oz vegetable broth
1.5 onions, peeled and sliced thinly
3 cloves roasted garlic
A few dashes of Worcestershire (to taste)
Meltable white cheese of your choice (traditionally gruyere, I use manchego or other hard sheep's cheese because of my dairy allergy)
Croutons, or fried onions, or mashed potatoes (optional)
Saute the sliced onions until just barely done (al dente texture).
Divide them in half, putting one half in a soup pot and reserving the rest for later.
Add veggie broth and roasted garlic cloves to the soup pot and simmer on low for an hour.
You may at this point add any seasonings you prefer (like a dash or three of cayenne to spice it up, or some bay leaves for earthiness).
Grate your cheese and prepare your croutons/french fried onions/mashed potatoes.
After an hour of simmering, toss the reserved onions into the broth, along with as many dashes of Worcestershire that you desire. Turn the heat up to medium low and cook for an additional 20 minutes.
Remove soup from heat and ladle into bowls. Turn the oven on to broil, making sure the oven rack is in the topmost position.
Sprinkle a small handful of croutons of fried onions (we used to call them matchstick onions) into each bowl, on top of the soup. If you prefer, you can put a dollop of mashed potatoes in there instead.
Top with the cheese (for caloric sake, I stick with a pinch or two of cheese, just enough to make a light dusting).
Pop in the oven to broil for just a minute or two- keep an eye on them, as they go from perfect to smoking and burnt in about a nanosecond.
Carefully remove bowls from the oven and serve. Nom nom nom!
The veggie broth lowers the calorie and sodium content, as well as adding a light and complex flavor to the dish. On average (depending on the cheese you use and such) a bowl of this will run roughly 100 calories, making it a fantastic side dish, or low-cal option on a cold day.
Labels: food, recipe