Monday, 14 March 2011
Red Onion & Red Wine Soup
Regular visitors to my blog may have heard me mention ‘The Eagle Cookbook’ once or twice in the past two years.
Despite amassing a collection of cookbooks large enough that I can almost legitimately refer to the living room as ‘The upstairs library’, this eponymous recipe book remains one of my absolute favourites.
In fact, despite seemingly cooking through it from cover to cover, I still managed to idly flick through the other day and stumble across yet another excellent rustic recipe that had somehow escaped my attention.
This ones an absolute cracker as well, managing to use up a whole bottle of red wine and a rather spectacular heap of twelve red onions (Since starting ‘The Basement’ we often seem to have the odd spare bottle of red lurking, which makes me think I’m beginning to show my age here…not so long ago, it would have been sloshing down my gullet in the blink of an eye - if you're reading this, aghast at the very prospect of leftover wine, I salute you).
So, if you’re the proud owner of a red wine/red onion mountain, this one is for you. The dish is apparently northern Italian in origin, and is a bit of a warming winter soup, so seeing as more snow is knocking around parts of the UK right now, perhaps get it in before spring begins proper.
Oh, it’s served with Parmesan Bruschetta – which are ridiculously easy to make and are an integral part of the dish, so don’t omit these, ok?
Red Onion & Red Wine Soup with Parmesan Bruschetta
You’ll Need: -
1 Bottle of red wine
4 Bay Leaves
A few sprigs of Thyme
4 Tbs Olive Oil
12 Red Onions, sliced
4 Garlic cloves, chopped
2 Teaspoons tomato puree
500ml Vegetable stock
2 Tbs Balsamic Vinegar
1 Teaspoon ground cinnamon
For the Parmesan Bruschetta
6 Slices ‘country-style’ bread (I used sourdough).
2 Garlic cloves, peeled and halved
Extra virgin olive oil
Freshly grated Parmesan
Pour the wine into a large saucepan or casserole; add the cloves, bay leaves and half the thyme. Boil over a high heat until reduced by half. Strain, reserving the liquid. In the same saucepan, melt the butter with the olive oil. Add the red onions and garlic. Cook slowly over a medium heat until tender, stirring now and again. (This will take at least 30 mins).
Add the reduced wine, tomato puree, vegetable stock and the remaining thyme. Cook at a gentle simmer for half hour. Stir in the balsamic vinegar and cinnamon, simmer for another 15 mins and season.
To make the Bruschetta, toast the bread on a griddle or in a dry, heavy frying pan. Rub with garlic, and drizzle with extra virgin olive oil. Sprinkle with loads of Parmesan. Don’t be stingy.
Put a piece of Parmesan Bruschetta in each bowl, and pour over the soup. Garnish with thyme.
This soup is absolutely gorgeous, rich and sweet. In the photo I balanced the Bruschetta on top, but only so you, the reader, can see them. Otherwise, they’d be hidden under the soup. (Always thinking me). Oh and rather than the suggested 1 each, I decided 3 was a much safer bet, greedy bastardo that I am.
As is often the case with soups and stews, this tastes just that much better re-heated the next day.