Classic French Onion Soup Served in Bread Bowls
You can use whole wheat bread flour, white bread flour or a combination of the two to make the tasty bread bowls used in this recipe. If you do not have a bread machine, you can use another bread recipe to make the bread by hand. Any bread recipe will be good but keep the bread quite simple in flavor so it goes nicely with the French onion soup recipe.
If you do not have custard cups to make molded bread bowls, you can make bread rolls, slice the top off, and hollow them out, to fill them with the soup. This obviously wastes some of the bread but you can use the bits you remove to make croutons or use them in another way.
Serve each French onion soup filled bread bowl in another shallow bowl in case of leaks but toasting the bread should make it relatively waterproof (or soup-proof!) The bread bowls are edible, of course, and they will taste of the French onion soup recipe. Because of the bread bowls, this is a very special recipe, so if you are planning a dinner party you might wish to present this as your appetizer. If so, keep the bread and soup portions quite small. This soup is filling enough to be a complete meal so you will not want to fill your guests up before the main dish comes out. This is a very elegant recipe and everyone is sure to be bowled over by these cute bread bowls.
- 2 lbs Vidalia or Maui onions, thinly sliced
- 1 ½ quarts beef bouillon (not broth)
- ¼ cup butter
- 1 cup Gruyere cheese, grated
- 1 cup Burgundy wine or similar red wine
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- 1 cup plus 1 tablespoon water
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 egg yolk
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 2 ¾ cups whole wheat bread flour
- 1 ½ teaspoons active dry yeast or bread machine yeast
- Put all the bread bowl ingredients except 1 tablespoon of the water and the egg yolk in the bread machine pan in the order suggested by the manufacturer.
- Choose the dough/manual cycle. Take the dough out of the machine with floured hands, cover it, and let it rest on a lightly floured surface for 10 minutes.
- Grease the outsides of six 10 oz custard cups and put them upside down on an ungreased baking sheet. Divide the dough into 6 pieces and roll each one into a 7 inch circle, shaping them over the custard cups. Cover and let them rise somewhere warm for 20 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
- Mix together the tablespoon of water and the egg yolk and use this mixture to brush over the bread bowls. Bake them for about 20 minutes or until they are golden brown, then lift them off the custard cups and cook them on a wire rack.
- While the bread bowls bake, make the soup.
- Melt the butter in a big pot and add the onions.
- Cover the pot and cook the onions over a low heat, stirring them now and then, until they are soft.
- This will take 20 to 30 minutes.
- Pour the bouillon into a saucepan and bring it to a boil.
- Cook it for about 30 minutes or until it has reduced by about a third.
- Take the lid off the pot with the onion in and sprinkle the sugar in it.
- Cook over a medium heat until the onions are caramelized.
- Keep an eye on them to make sure they do not burn or stick to the pan.
- Add the reduced bouillon and the wine and bring the mixture to a boil.
- Partially cover the pan and let the onion soup simmer for 30 minutes.
- Toast the bread bowls gently all over to make them less likely to leak.
- Fill each bread bowl with onion soup and sprinkle some Gruyere on each one.
- The heat of the soup will partially melt it.
These French onion soup filled homemade bread bowls make a really impressive appetizer. You can either mold the bread mixture over custard cups to make bowl shapes or you can make bread rolls, slice the top off, and hollow out the inside. It is important to toast the bread before you put the soup inside, else it might leak. You can see from the photo how the bread is slightly toasted. This easy French onion soup recipe is easy to make and is…
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