Sunday, November 21, 2010

Barefoot Bloggers: Onion & Fennel Soup Gratin

I slept through my alarm this morning missing my bars class. My head was achy and my throat was sore. So I suppose it was best I didn't get out of bed at 8 a.m.

I slept until noon. At which point I got up had some juice, IBuprofen, peppersteak w/ rice, and watched my beloved Vikings kickoff against the Packers.

After the first quarter I promptly fell asleep on the couch, due to frustration, and disappointment. I want to scream, "Fire Chilly," but the verdict is still out on that for me, not sure it will make a difference at this point.

Yesterday I had the entire house to myself, and thus did a lot of cooking. Including:

Chocolate Cupcakes. Which I failed to take a picture of the finished product. Sorry.

And the Barefoot Bloggers project Fennel and Onion Soup Gratin.

The soup was hot, and cheesy, and delicious. It takes a while to make, it definitely isn't a weeknight meal. But if you have a weekend afternoon, and want something yummy, and decadent, and leisurely to make this is it. I am a fan of french onion soup, and the addition of fennel makes it a little fancier, and gives it an extra depth of unexpected flavor. I didn't have any sherry, or brandy so I left it out, and a subbed swiss for gruyere, because I am a broke college student. But I did have bacon ;-) As always I encourage you to make this recipe your own. Do whatever it is you have to do so that you will make this!

After eating the soup, I was still hungry. So I made some Peppersteak, and rice. It was very homey, and comforting, and filling. I ate it too fast, so there is no picture. But now that I have mentioned it, I will make sure to make it and share it one day. It's a family recipe, of Jamaican and Chinese heritage. And I love it. And no one makes it like my daddy. But I get pretty close!

I hope ya'll are having a great weekend. I have a fun post having to do with my list coming up tomorrow!

Love and Bacon grease,
Hannah L.


Fennel & Onion Soup Gratin
Recipe by: Ina Garten, from How Easy is That?
4 Tblsp Butter
1/4 Cup Olive Oil
1/3 lb bacon chopped
3 lb sweet Onions (halved, and sliced 1/4 inch thick)
2lbs fennel, tops and core removed, sliced 1/4 inch thick
1 Tblsp minced garlic
1 1/2 Cup Dry white wine (i.e. Sauvignon Blanc)
8 Cups Beef stock
3 Bay leaves
Salt and pepper to taste
Crusty French bread, sliced 1/4 inch thick and toasted
4-6 ounces swiss cheese, grated

Brown bacon until crispy remove from pan. Remove grease.

Add butter and olive oil to same pot over medium heat, add in onions, cook for approximately 20 minutes until soft, and starting to brown.

Add in fennel and garlic, cook additional 10-20 minutes, until fennel start to soften, and caramelize. If onions and fennel are not browning, turn heat up.

Add in white wine and scrap up brown bits from bottom of pan, allow to simmer for 15 minutes. Add in beef stock, bay leaves. Taste and season with salt an pepper. Bring to a boil, lower heat, and simmer for 20 minutes. Add bacon back in, remove bay leaves, and taste for seasoning.

Preheat broiler and position rack 5 inches below the heat source. Ladle soup into oven proof serving bowls, top with toasted bread, and sprinkle generously with cheese. Broil for 3-5 minutes, until cheese is melted and bubbly. Serve hot.

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