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View Full Version : French Onion Soup Deglazed with Mead



AToE
10-21-2009, 03:14 PM
Okay, made up a pot of this last night and figured I'd post it. Note that this is my personal take on french onion soup, and is not meant to be traditional, or particularly consistant! This is just a variation of what I usually do with white or red wine.

This makes about 4 bowls

Ingredients:

2 Gigantic red onions (roughly double the normal size)
3 Regular sized yellow onions (any of the onions in this recipe can be swapped for other types)
6+ Medium/Large cloves of Garlic (use as many as you want, I might try a batch soon with 2 or 3 full bunches of garlic)
Thyme
Sea Salt
Broth (Beef is best, second place is chicken, then vegitable for vegitarians and vegans)
1/2 Cup of mead (or more...) I used a dry traditional clover mead

Process:

Finely slice (not dice) all the onions and chuck them in a big pot. Add a very liberal dash of sea salt to help draw out their liquids, but don't go too nuts, remember broth is salty and you can always add more later.

Peel your garlic and cut off that dried out butt part. Do not chop them. Do not crush them. I don't know the exact chemistry, but if you cut up garlic before you cook it, a chemical reaction takes place creating that "sharp" strong galic taste, but if you cook it first, you prevent that reaction from ever happening and end up with a mellow chunk of pure awesome! (think roasted garlic here). Chuck those into the pot and cover it.

By the time you're done, the garlic will have mysteriously melted.

Put the pot on medium-low heat, and start waiting. For the first 1/2 hour I stir them pretty often, then I cut it back to every 15 minutes or so. If you think that too much liquid is in the pot, cook it with the lid off until it gets closer to dry.

Eventually the onions will have cooked down and will start carmelizing and sticking to the bottom of the pot. Let them stick, but watch out for burning. When they're good and stuck, use a small amount of the broth to deglaze the bottom, then stir it and let it get stuck again. Then deglaze again. When your onions are all thoroughly dark brown, do one final deglazing with your mead of choice (any should work, within reason. Dark melomels would be especially good). If you're willing to put in a lot more mead, you can do several deglazings with it. Then stir in the rest of the broth and let it simmer.

Depending on a lot of things the amount of time for this whole process varies. I'd budget at least 3 hours.

Now, if you have fresh thyme, toss it in and pull it out when you feel it is thyme-y enough. I only had dried, so I made a tea seperately and strained out the bits, and added to taste.

At this point you would traditionaly put it into oven safe bowls, with a peice of toast floating on top, covered with mozzarella cheese, and melt it good in the oven. In my case, I just started a 1.5 month long "no animal products" binge, so no cheese for me.

The mead (or other wine) adds a lot to the dish, though depending on what and how much you used you might not easily pick it out in the final product - but if you make a batch without you'll instantly miss it, it's like the bass player in a rock band.

Enjoy!