Instructables

Vegetarian French Onion Soup

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Sweet, caramelized onions in a rich stock covered in melty cheese - it doesn't get much better than that! French onion soup is awesome, but it's usually made with beef stock which is problematic for vegetarians. With a few simple ingredients, it's easy to whip up some awesome French onion soup that will please any non-carnivore.

Note: As indicated below, vegan cheese can be substituted if desired (for the vegan folks), and the bread can be substituted with this awesome gluten-free and gum-free bread or this one (with the Parmesan cheese replaced with some Gruyere) and the flour can be omitted or replaced with corn starch dissolved in warm stock (for the gluten-free folks)
 
 
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Step 1: You'll Need. . .

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Software (note: the following is for two servings, for more just multiply the amounts):
  • One large sweet onion, sliced very thin
  • 2 or 3 slices French bread (day old, approximately 1/2 inch thick) (For folks who avoid gluten, give it a shot with this awesome gluten-free and gum-free bread or this one with the Parmesan cheese replaced with some Gruyere instead)
  • Approximately 4 oz. Gruyere cheese, shaved thin (more cheese can be added if desired) (substitute vegan cheese if desired)
  • 2 cups vegetable stock
  • 1 tablespoon butter (or margarine or oil if making vegan)
  • 1 tablespoon flour (omit or replace with a tablespoon of cornstarch dissolved in warm stock if making gluten-free)
  • 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1 clove garlic, finely minced
  • 1 clove garlic, cut in half
  • salt (probably won't be needed unless you're a huge salt fan), pepper, herbs to taste
Hardware:
  • Large skillet
  • Very sharp knife
  • Vegetable peeler
  • Small sauce pot with fitted lid
  • 2 oven-safe ramekins or other small soup crocks (each 10 oz. - these are the ones used here)
Wicken3 years ago
For extra flavour, try using shallots and red onions in equal proportion to white onion. I use about 2lb vegetables to 1L stock. Stock from roasted veg is lovely, also there is a brand (I think McCormick's) that makes 'vegetarian beef' stock cubes, but they do have MSG-type chemicals in them. If you are short on bread, croutons will do in a pinch.

Now I just have to find a way to sub for the bread. (I am celiac AND allergic to the gums subbed into GF breads.) There is something incredibly lovely about the bread in the soup. I rarely miss wheat but this soup is one of those times.
shesparticular (author)  Wicken3 years ago
I ended up trying out the GF and gum-free bread recipe I found online and came up with this variation that I think works out pretty well. Now you can have French onion soup!
shesparticular (author)  Wicken3 years ago
Thanks for these suggestions. I personally prefer sweet onions to red, and I almost always make my own stock (and avoid MSG), but those are some great ideas.

I haven't done a ton of GF baking, but I wonder if it might be possible to make some GF bread but omit the gums?

Thanks again!
@Wicken + Shesparticular,
I'm not celiac, but had some experience with GF cooking and baking. GF bread is already an art form to make tasty, but I'm not sure you could make something you would call 'bread' if you don't use some form of gum. Guar or xanthan gum (typically found in GF bread) act as the binding/thickening agent, even when the recipe calls for eggs too.

There are recipes for other floury-loaf products (I think RedMills makes a few natural biscut and bread mixes) which may contain less gums.
Like many things, you're going to have to do it DIY style to get what you need. Remember to share the results!

shesparticular (author)  mikeasaurus3 years ago
Thanks mikasaurus! I actually just came across this gluten-free bread recipe which doesn't contain any gums - may be worth a shot at least, Wicken. I haven't tried it out, so I don't know if it's any good or not. Please do let me know if you try it out!
setevikman3 years ago
It is a very natyrals :)
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