French onion soup with cheesy toast 0



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French onion soup found fame in Australian kitchens in the ’60s and ’70s when the French food movement really took off. Since then it’s fallen by the wayside a little, which is a shame because it’s so damn tasty!

Forget about the packet mix version and make your own with this classic recipe that uses all the original ingredients that gave it that famous flavour. Top your soup with these tasty cheesy toasts and you’ll be satisfied and full in no time!


  • 50g unsalted butter
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 4 large onions (about 1kg), sliced
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 50ml brandy
  • 3 cups (750ml) chicken stock
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 3 thyme sprigs
  • 4 thick slices sourdough
  • 1 garlic clove, halved
  • 1 cup (120g) grated Gruyère cheese


1. Melt the butter with the oil in a large saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the onion, sugar and 1 teaspoon salt and cook, stirring occasionally, for 20 minutes or until golden and caramelised.

2. Add the brandy, then increase heat to medium-high and cook for 1-2 minutes until liquid is almost evaporated. Add the chicken stock, balsamic and herbs, bring to a simmer, then reduce heat to low. Cook for 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until thickened.

3. Meanwhile, preheat the grill to high. Grill bread on both sides until golden. Rub one side of each slice with garlic, top with cheese, then grill for a further 1-2 minutes until the cheese has melted.

5. Divide toasts among 4 soup bowls, then ladle over the soup and serve.



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