A true French classic that is wonderfully satisfying to make at home. I got my first taste of this comforting soup at Rookwood Pottery in Cincinnati OH. It was not only delicious it was an exotic French dish that this small town girl had ever had and I must say I was in LOVE with this soup and what a love affair it is. Hope you enjoy my version of this great soup!
Thyme & Gruyère Fench Onion Soup
A classic French recipe, well worth trying.
- 2 tbsp butter
- 4 large sweet yellow onions, sliced in half then sliced into thin half rings
- 2 large red/purple onions, sliced in half then sliced into thin half rings
- 2 tbsp plain flour
- 1 tbsp thyme leaves
- 8 cups beef stock
- 1/2 cup white wine
- salt and pepper
- 1 clove garlic
- 12 thick slices of stale French bread
- 1 cup grated Gruyère cheese
- Heat the butter in a large casserole over a medium heat and add the onions. Season with sea salt and cook gently, stirring frequently until they are a rich dark brown color – this can take up to 30 minutes so have patience.
- Stir in the flour and thyme until the flour is evenly combined. Season with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Pour the wine in and deglaze the pot then pour the stock over and cover.
- Cook gently for about 30 minutes. Stir and check the seasoning.
- Meanwhile, lightly toast the bread under a medium broiler, remove and rub all over with a garlic clove. Ladle the soup into oven proof bowls set on a heavy baking sheet, place a slice of bread in each one and place a mound of grated cheese in the center of each one. Place under a hot grill until the cheese is melted and golden. Garnish with fresh thyme and serve.
Rookwood Pottery of Cincinnati was the first to gain artistic recognition and respect for the United States. In 1889, Rookwood was awarded the First Prize Gold Medal at the Paris Exposition Universelle. This was a shock to the international artistic community who had never really paid much attention to American ceramics. In less than a decade after starting as a hobby pottery shop, Rookwood had grown to become a company with an international reputation for ceramic excellence. This recognition forever changed the way the international community viewed American art.
In 1876, Maria Longworth from Cincinnati attended the Centennial Exhibition in Philadelphia. With over four hundred countries displaying the finest of their ceramic accomplishments, many thought that the American pieces were inferior. At this time, this perception was not unusual. It was generally thought that American art was hundreds of years behind the rest of the world. Especially in ceramics, American art was considered unrefined, made with little talent or technique.
Inspired by the Japanese designs she saw in Philadelphia, Maria began to dream of changing that perception. Fortunately, Maria was a woman with aspirations and means. The daughter of real estate millionaire and arts patron Joseph Longworth, Maria asked her father to provide the funds for her own pottery. She believed that the key to creating fine art was to create an environment filled with talent, ideas and inspiration.
Named after the Longworth family estate in Cincinnati, Rookwood became the first female manufacturing company in the United States. Maria hired a team of famous artists, talented art students and glaze technicians encouraging them to exchange ideas. Most importantly, she encouraged her employees to be creative, to try new subjects, new techniques and new mediums. Whatever inspired them to create fine art.
Doing what you love is freedom …Loving what you do is happiness…