Carpathian Onion Soup (Recipe)

So I came up with this soup a few weeks ago, and tonight I find myself turning to it again. It’s a variation on the theme of “French Onion Soup” but features a few twists that I’ve decided to call “Carpathian” purely because of the garlic factor. I’ll probably tweak it a bit tonight – bacon, instead of sausage, a little bit of nappa thrown in, and maybe some roasted garlic hummus on the toast (in lieu of the cheese) for our one non-dairy-eating guest. 🙂

~*~

INGREDIENTS
For the sauté
3 red onions
1 medium-sized carrot
6-10 medium-sized cloves of garlic
¼ C lard (or sausage drippings, or bacon grease… you get the idea – though for a vegetarian version, using butter or sesame oil would work fine)
1 pre-cooked, mildly spicy sausage (leave out if you want this to be veg-friendly)
1 tsp each: tomato ketchup, grainy mustard

For the broth
½ C + 2-3 C water
1 tbsp each: soy sauce, granulated sugar, white wine vinegar (balsamic could also be lovely)
1 tbsp each: dried tarragon, dried (winter) savoury
1 tsp paprika
½ tsp dried rosemary

For the toasts
3 slices of bread (cook’s choice – I’ve made this with everything from home-made whole wheat to store-bought wonder-fluff, and it works with whatever)
Havarti cheese, sliced thinly or grated (you can use the cheap, grocery-store blocks for this if you like, they work just fine) enough to cover all the slices of bread

DIRECTIONS
1. In a cast iron frying pan, melt the fat over low heat
2. Grate ¾ of the carrot and slice the rest into paper-thin rounds
3. Peel the onions, cut them in half, then slice the halves into paper-thin rounds
4. Peel the garlic and mince in a garlic press
5. Slice the sausage in half length-wise, then slice into thin rounds
6. Combine the above in the frying pan and sauté, covered, on low heat until the onions are translucent and everything smells amazing
7. Add the ketchup and the mustard and stir in until well-combined
8. Allow to continue simmering on very low heat
9. In a sauce pan, combine the herbs, paprika, vinegar, soy sauce, and sugar with the half-cup of water and whisk together until a smooth “slurry” forms (you can use a fork)
10. Add the rest of the water and bring to a boil
11. Carefully add the onion mixture to the broth mixture and lower the heat
12. Allow to simmer while you make the toasts
13. For the toast, set your three pieces of bread on a wire rack, on a cookie sheet
14. Cover each slice of bread with cheese (not too thick, but don’t be stingy, either)
15. With your oven-rack on its LOWEST point (below the middle of the oven), place the cookie sheet in the oven and BROIL the bread and cheese for about two minutes (long enough for the oven to reach broiling temperature – you will need to keep an eye on things to make sure nothing burns)
16. Turn off the oven
17. Ladle the soup into three bowls
18. Take the toasts out of the oven and set one, cheese-side-up, on the surface of each serving of soup
19. Serve and enjoy

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s