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Julia Child's French Onion Soup

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  • 1 ½ to 2 pounds onions, thinly sliced (5-6 cups)
  • 3 Tbsp. butter
  • 3 Tbsp. olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • ½ teaspoon sugar 
  • 3 Tbsp. flour
  • 6 cups beef stock or bone broth
  • ½ cup - 1 cup white wine (I used mirin rice wine)
  • Optional: ½ teaspoon ground sage 
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 8 slices French baguette, 1-inch thick
  • White pepper
  • Optional: 2-3 tablespoons cognac 
  • ½ small onion, grated (raw)
  • 12 ounces Swiss cheese, grated
  • 4 oz. Parmesan cheese


  1. Increase the heat to medium-high. Add the sea salt and sugar. Cook and stir until the onions have caramelized. They should turn brown and be very soft. The volume will also cook down.
  2. Reduce the heat to medium-low. Add the flour and stir. Cook for a few minutes, until it thickens. If it gets too thick you can add a little butter. 
  3. Stir in 1 cup of the beef stock. Cook and stir for a few seconds. Add the remaining beef stock, white wine and optional sage and bay leaf, if using. Bring to a boil over medium high heat. Reduce the heat to simmer on low for 30 minutes.
  4. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Arrange the baguette slices on a baking sheet and lightly drizzle or brush each side of the bread with some olive oil. Bake for 15 minutes. Turn the bread over and bake for another 15 minutes.
  5. Season the soup with sea salt and pepper. Remove the optional bay leaf if you used one. Add optional cognac, grated raw onion and a small amount of the Swiss cheese.
  6. Place the toasted bread on top of the soup. Sprinkle with the remaining Swiss cheese and the Parmesan cheese. Drizzle the cheese with a little olive oil, or you can use some melted butter. Place the Dutch oven in the preheated oven, uncovered. Bake for 30 minutes, or until the cheese melts. You can turn on the broiler if you wish to brown the cheese.
  7. Remove the soup from the oven and let it cool a bit.
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