Gratinée des halles - French onion soup

The secret to this classic French onion soup recipe is getting a good colour on the onions at the initial cooking stage, so settle in with a glass of chilled wine and prepare yourself for some patient stirring. Your hard work will be amply rewarded by bags of deep, caramelised flavour in this rich soup from Martin Wishart

First published in 2015
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Ingredients

Metric

Imperial

Soup

Cheese and garlic croutons

  • 1 baguette
  • 4 tbsp of olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, peeled and finely sliced
  • 30g of Parmesan, finely grated
  • 30g of Emmental, finely grated

Method

1
Place a large, heavy-based pan on the stove. When the pan is hot, add the oil and melt the butter then add the onions, garlic and bacon
2
Cook over a medium heat for 15-20 minutes, stirring so they become soft and a deep golden brown
3
Add the cognac and set it alight so the alcohol burns off. Pour in the cider and bring to the boil, stirring constantly, until the liquid has reduced by two-thirds
4
Stir in the flour then add the stock and a pinch of salt. Bring to the boil, skimming off any scum that rises to the surface, then turn down the heat and simmer for about 30 minutes
  • 35g of flour
  • 1.5l beef stock
  • salt
5
Check the seasoning and add salt and freshly ground pepper if required
6
To make the croutons, set the oven to 180˚C/Gas mark 4. Cut the baguette into 18 slices, about 1cm thick. Place on a baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil and bake until golden brown
  • 1 baguette
  • 4 tbsp of olive oil
7
Rub the cooked croutons with the garlic, sprinkle with the cheese and place under a hot grill until the cheese turns golden brown
8
Serve the soup in large bowls with the croutons on top
First published in 2015
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Although steeped in the techniques of the classical French kitchen, Martin Wishart’s culinary imagination has a distinctly contemporary edge.

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