French onion soup is one of my all time favourite soups. The unwaveringly delicious flavour of carmelized onions, rich beef stock and ooey gooey gruyere cheese makes it easy to understand why this classic has stood the test of time. I could easily eat it every night and so keeping that in mind I came up with this five ingredient family favourite. The end result is a casserole style dish that embodies all the qualities of a delicious French onion soup!
Freebies: 3 tbsp butter, ½ cup water, ½ tsp salt, ½ tsp black pepper
5 cooking onions
1.5 lbs (678g) lean ground beef (Or 3 boneless, skinless chicken breast cut into quarters)
2 ½ cups beef stock
3 cups large spiral egg noodles
1 ½ cups grated gruyere
Peel the onions and slice them (with the grain) into half-moons.
Add the butter to a large, heavy bottomed skillet set over medium heat. Once the butter melts add the onions and cook them over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, for 25min until the onions are brown. Stir in half the salt and pepper and turn the heat off. Remove the onions from the pan.
Add the remainder of the salt and pepper to the beef and mix. Roll the ground beef into small meatballs (about 2” round). You will end up with about 20 meatballs.
Turn the heat under the skillet to low and add the meatballs. The bottom of the pan will be brown but that is okay. Cook the meatballs on all sides until they are golden brown. The meatballs will not be cooked all the way through.
Add the beef stock and water to the pan and gently stir, scrapping any brown bits off the bottom. Gently mix in the onions and noodles and bring everything up to a simmer. Turn the heat to low and cover the pot with a tight-fitting lid, cook for 5min. Remove the lid and stir gently. Place the lid back on the skillet and cook for another 3min.
Tip: To get perfectly carmelized onions, stir occasionally and manage your heat. If you see the onions browning too quickly or unevenly turn your heat down. It's not a difficult process but it does require close to 25min.
For a printable version of the recipe click here.