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

Serves 6

You’ll Need: -

1 Bottle of red wine
4 Cloves
4 Bay Leaves
A few sprigs of Thyme
50g Butter
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.


PDH said...

Where's the beef stock? :^P

Gourmet Butcher said...

This is perfect for a cold day, and with the use of veg stock both meat lovers and vegetarians alike can enjoy!

josordoni said...

odd numbers always look better so three is a good idea.

mind you, on that basis, maybe I'll have nine...

lovely looking soup, Dan, and interesting that the onions and the wine form the base flavour, I find the beefiness of French Onion soup can be too heavy for me these days, this sounds a lot lighter.

Sprinzette @ Ginger and Almonds said...

Looks fantastic - I'd love a bowl of that right now. Thanks for sharing!

Dan said...

Pavel - hahaha you honestly don't need beef stock for this. It's very rich.

Gourmet Butcher - Couldn't agree more. Especially as 'E' is a vegetarian.

Josordoni - Agreed, odd numbers are tres elegant. It's slightly sweet, very different from French onion soup.

Sprinzette - thanks.

Unknown said...

Love this cookbook - such a winner. I haven't tried this soup either, will have to rectify!

girls who like to gorge said...

mmm, this sounds fabulous! Love the red wine addition.. have never done that with onion soup before, great shout though. xx

Dan said...

Gourmet Chick - Cracking book (We've spoken about it before). Well worth trying this soup, it's awesome.

Dan said...

Girls who like to gorge - If you dont have The Eagle cookbook, you should try and get it. It's full of really simple rustic recipes, like this one. Oh and red wine in soup? Hell yeah!

Hollow Legs said...

I've been hankering after an onion soup for a while. Mmmm oniony. Mmm cheesy.