Monday, February 24, 2014

Meatless Mondays

For awhile now, we have been enjoying Meatless Mondays in an effort to be healthier and reduce the amount of animal protein in our diets.  One step at a time, one day at a time.  Not that we don't enjoy vegetarian fare other nights, but Meatless Monday is a new tradition in our house.

Tonight I served French onion soup and a side salad of arugula, goat cheese, strawberries, with a chocolate balsamic drizzle.  





I used to prepare French onion soup in the 80's, along with quiche and fondue.  It sort of fell by the wayside and was resurrected recently with the caramelized onions I put on the baked potatoes, and the fondue.  And I also got some oven-safe bowls and dishes.   So here goes:

Slice 4-6 yellow onions French style; that is in thin slices.  I first cut the onion in half and then slice on the cutting board so it doesn't roll around.  




 Saute the onions in a large soup pot in a couple of tablespoons of olive oil.  Traditionally, butter is used, but I like the viscosity and the healthfulness of the oil.  Some people add a little flour to the onions to thicken the soup a bit.  I just caramelized and reduce them with a bit of red wine, before adding the broth.  I used a quart of store brand beef broth, and then added  two packets of low sodium bullion and 2 cups of water.  True vegetarians could use vegetable broth with the same results. Salt, pepper, a dash of Worcestershire.  That's it. Simmer for awhile on a low heat, about 60 minutes, or so all the flavors co-mingle.  




Meanwhile, I sliced some crusty bread, and lightly toasted it in the oven.  Again,  you can butter it first, but I opted for plain. 



I just popped this under the broiler for a couple of minutes.  I let it hang out getting crispy while soup simmered.     When the soup is done, spoon it into oven-safe crockery.  Place a bread slice, or two,  in each bowl. 



Top with grated Gruyere cheese and then a slice of Swiss over the top.  Place under the broiler until the cheese is melty and piping hot.

   

  Warm and satisfying and meatless.  DIVINE!





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