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French Onion Soup

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4 tbsp Butter
2 tbsp Olive oil
2 lb Onions, thinly sliced
1 tsp Salt
3 tbsp Flour
4 pt Beef stock, fresh or canned
6 slices whole grain bread, 1" thick
2/3 tbsp Olive oil
1 clove Garlic, cut
1 cup low-fat cheese (Swiss, monterey jack, mozzarella or your choice), freshly grated


In a heavy 4-5 qt saucepan or soup kettle, melt the butter with the oil over a moderate heat. Stir in the onions and salt and cook uncovered over low heat, stirring occasionally for 20-30 minutes, or until the onions are a rich golden brown. Sprinkle flour over onions and cook, stirring, for 2-3 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat. In a separate saucepan, bring the stock to a simmer, then stir the hot stock into the onions. Return the soup to low heat and simmer, partially covered, for
another 30-40 minutes, occasionally skimming off the fat. Taste for seasoning and add salt and pepper as needed.

CROTES: While the soup simmers, make the crotes. Preheat the oven to 325F. Spread the slices of bread in one layer on a baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes. With a pastry brush, lightly coat both sides of each slice with olive oil. Then turn the slices.

To serve, place the crotes in a large tureen or individual soup bowls and ladle the soup over them. Pass the grated cheese seperately. Alternative: To make onion soup gratine, preheat the oven to 375F. Ladle the soup into an ovenproof tureen or individual soup bowls, top with crotes, and spread the grated cheese on top. Bake until cheese bubbling.