Some years ago, I visited Paris, ate a delicious version of the soup, and vowed to reproduce it when I arrived back home. Unfortunately, procrastination won. I didn’t have the right bowls. I couldn’t find the right cheese. The camera was out of battery. You know how it goes.
When I finally created the courage to make it (and let go of some details), I realized it was quite easy – all it really takes is patience. I basically followed Julia Child‘s recipe (and in this wonderful video, she also teaches how to sharpen knives! <3), but then I procrastinated again, and it took me over a month to write this recipe! 😀
For six “civilized-people” portions (a.k.a., Sky and I ate well over half for dinner), you will need:
5 cups thinly sliced yellow onions
3 Tbsp butter – I totally eyeballed that.
1 Tbsp olive oil – yep, I eyeballed that one too.
1 tsp salt – this I measured! 😀
3 Tbsp flour
2 L beef stock – Deb suggests mushroom stock for a vegetarian version
1 cup white wine – in the video, she uses red wine, but most recipes I have read call for white wine, so that’s what I did.
3 Tbsp cognac – I skipped it.
1 bay leaf
1 tsp thyme
Salt and pepper
To serve (technically, this is optional, but it really isn’t):
6 ovenproof bowls
6 slices of bread – I used large slices of Italian bread, but next time I’ll use baguette slices, as it will be easier to eat… 😀
1-2 cups of coarsely shredded gruyère – as I don’t really like gruyère, I used an Uruguayan cheese that melts easily (colonia) and parmesan. And yes, I used plenty!
Start by slicing the onions as thinly as you can. Here, I needed about six medium-sized onions to get five cups. In a big, thick-bottomed pan, melt the butter and the olive oil. Place the onions, and toss to coat them in oil. On the lowest heat, cover the pan and let the onions cook for about 15 minutes.
Remove the lid, turn up the heat a little bit, and add the salt. The original recipe also called for a pinch of sugar, but I totally forgot about it. Cook for 30 to 40 minutes, stirring often, until all the onions are brown − don’t be lazy about it: that caramelization is what is going to make your soup tasty! Sprinkle the flour over the caramelized onions and stir for about three minutes. Add the wine and the stock slowly, stirring continuously (and don’t forget to scrape the bottom of the pan!)
Season with pepper and salt (unless you’re using salted stock). I resisted the urge to add paprika! Simmer over medium heat, cover the pan and cook for 30 to 40 minutes. If you’re using cognac, now is time to add it.
You can serve as it is and it will be great, but really, the best thing to do is broil it! Toast the bread slices and then butter them – once in hell, hug the devil! Divide the soup into six ovenproof bowls. In each of them, add one piece of toast (again, next time I’ll use a baguette; the smaller slices will be easier to handle!) and cover the bowl with a generous layer of cheese.
Bake the soups on a tray for about 20 minutes − I used the toaster oven, with heat coming from top and bottom, but you can be normal and just use your broiler to make it nice and golden. Dig in!
I love garlic. I know I say that about every recipe with this ingredient, but it’s true. And I always add more garlic than the recipe calls for, because… well, did I mention I love garlic? But there’s always a first time for everything, and I found a soup recipe by Deb that called for exactly 44 cloves of garlic – I didn’t dare to change such a specific number!
Yes, I know that 44 cloves are roughly three heads of garlic. It sounded excessive, even for me! Don’t worry: as 26 of these are roasted, the recipe is actually quite mild. The “Vampire Slayer” part stays, though, as it is catchier than “44-clove garlic soup that isn’t really that scary.” 😀
For four reasonable servings (a.k.a. Sky and I ate it all and called it dinner), you’ll need:
26 garlic cloves, unpeeled
2 Tbsp olive oil
2 Tbsp butter – I totally eyeballed that
2 ¼ cups onion, thinly sliced – this was roughly 2 medium-sized onions
1 ½ tsp fresh thyme – I eyeballed that too, obviously
18 garlic cloves, peeled
3 ½ cups of beef broth – for a vegetarian version, use veggie stock!
½ cup heavy cream
½ cup parmesan cheese, finely grated – did you know that parmesan is NOT vegetarian? Yeah, it shocked me too. You can replace it for another strong hard cheese.
1 lemon, cut into four wedges
The first step is to roast those 26 garlic cloves. Pre-heat the oven to 200 C, place the unpeeled garlic cloves in a small baking dish, cover with the olive oil, and season with a generous pinch of salt and some pepper. Toss to make sure the garlic cloves are coated. Cover the baking dish with foil and bake for about 45 minutes, or until the garlic is soft. Let it cool a little bit and do something that is oddly satisfying: cut the end of each clove and squeeze them out into a small bowl.
Melt the butter in a large pot. Throw in the onions and thyme, and cook until the onions are translucent – Deb says it takes 6 minutes, which makes sense, as it took me two indie songs to do it. Add the roasted garlic and the 18 raw garlic cloves and cook for one song (or 3 minutes). Add the stock, cover the pot, and let it simmer over medium heat until the cloves are soft, which should take about 20 minutes.
Blend the soup using a conventional blender (carefully, in batches, so you don’t burn yourself like I did that one time) or an immersion blender. Transfer the soup back to the pot, add the cream, and bring it back to a simmer. Check the seasoning – Deb used just salt and pepper, I added paprika as well, just because.
Hmm, didn’t the recipe call for cheese and lemon? It does! Divide the cheese among four soup bowls. Ladle the soup over the cheese, squeeze one lemon wedge on each bowl, and serve!
The carrots were very pretty at the grocery store – they had that “buy me” look. It was time to make a recipe I had pinned centuries ago. You know one of those recipes that you think it’s going to work great, but you are kinda lazy and simply don’t do it? Yep.
Well, it was silly of me to be lazy about this recipe, as it is very easy – and wonderful! This is without a doubt one of the most interesting soups I’ve ever made, proving once again that Patricia Scarpin is a genius. ❤ As usual, I’ve adapted it a little bit, because that’s just how it goes.
The recipe is vegetarian, but to veganize it all you have to do is replace the cream for a soy/rice version.
1 kg carrots – peel and chop into big chunks
350 g onions – same deal
Roughly 3 Tbsp olive oil
Salt and pepper – I added paprika too
About 5 cloves of garlic, peel and all – from the famous series “things I decided to add while taking the ingredients shot”
1 tsp cumin
1.5 liters veggie stock – I used the homemade version , concentrated, and completed with water
250 mL heavy cream, or a vegan substitute
Place the carrots, onions, and garlic on a baking sheet. Add the olive oil, salt, pepper, paprika, and cumin. Mix everything very well and bake in a pre-heated oven for 40 minutes, or until the carrot is tender.
Then, remove the garlic peels – it should be very easy! – and place the ingredients from the baking sheet into a blender, adding the stock to help the process. As my blender died #RIPblender, I placed everything in the pot and used my immersion blender.
When everything is nice and blended, add the cream and heat the soup until it starts to boil. Serve immediately.
FREEZER: As most soups, this recipe freezes pretty well. I just placed the cold leftovers in a Ziploc bag! When re-heating, I used the immersion blender to pulse it a little bit, so it would regain the original texture.
I LOVE lentils. Before, they were a synonym of New Year’s Eve: Grandma would always make lentil rice (with plenty of bacon), saying “Eat it, it’ll bring prosperity in the new year.” Not only were they delicious, but they also brought money?? BRING’EM!
Try as I might, I didn’t become a millionaire by eating lentils – but this is no reason not to make this delicious soup! 🙂
The original recipe called for mushrooms, but I didn’t add them, because I hate them! #truestory #sorrynotsorry BUT they are a great idea to veganize the soup! 🙂
400 g lentils
2 medium onions, thinly chopped
1 large carrots, thinly chopped
150-200 g bacon − the original recipe called for only 50 g, because it also had mushrooms. If you want to veganize the recipe, use them instead of bacon!
1 L water
Salt and pepper – skip the salt if you’re using a bouillon cube!
This is a mystery-free recipe: in a large pan, fry the bacon, the onions, and the carrots. When the bacon is fried, add the lentils, the stock, and the water. Season with salt and pepper (I used a pepper mix).
Cook for approximately one hour, until everything is nice and soft. Then, all you have to do is put the soup on the blender! I bought an immersion blender and I’m in love! MUCH easier to clean than a traditional blender! 😀
When everything is blended, it’s ready to serve!
FREEZER: As most soups, this recipe freezes pretty well. I just placed the cold leftovers in a Ziploc bag! When re-heating, I just used the immersion blender to pulse it a little bit, so it would regain the original texture.
Is it cold where you are? It’s FREEZING here! Now that winter has officially arrived, it’s time for a soup season! 🙂
I had planned to post this recipe for a while now. We photographed it when Tia Leo came to visit us LAST YEAR! It was still cold here, but as it was already super hot in Brazil, I decided against ostentation 😀
Tia Leo was the person who actually cooked this. My role in the making of this soup was to take pictures, talk a lot, and drink wine! I always had a bit of an issue with pumpkins, because I thought they were hard to prep, but Tia Leo taught me the EASY way to deal with them: cook with skin and all, THEN remove it! Duh! So easy!
1 medium-sized pumpkin, cut in chunks – leave the skin on for an easier time
2 veggie stock cubes, or the homemade veggie stock − I didn’t have any ready, #shameonme
50 mL heavy cream
60 g gorgonzola
Parsley/chives, to garnish
Cut the pumpkin into big chunks – Tia Leo warns that you are supposed to wash it beforehand, ok? 😀
Place the pumpkin in the pressure cooker and cover it with the veggie stock. Close the lid and wait until it pressurizes. When that happens, mark 8 minutes, then turn it off and wait for it to de-pressurize.
While you wait, you can crumb the gorgonzola and chop the parsley.
Open the pressure cooker and remove the pumpkin chunks – do not toss the cooking liquid, because we’ll still use a good amount of it! Now that the pumpkin is cooked, it’s easy to remove the skin, so do that! 😀
Place the pumpkin little by little in the blender, using some of the water to blend – you should get a texture like a runny purée. Place the purée in a big pan and continue the process until you finish all the pumpkin.
Add the cream and gorgonzola. Mix it and heat the soup until it simmers.
Dish, garnish with the parsley/chives and serve with some toasted bread – here, we had with the whole-wheat version of Bread in a Hurry!
FREEZER: I haven’t frozen this particular soup, but it would freeze just fine! I would recommend you blend it again after it’s thawed, though, for better texture.