Caramelized Onion And Portabella Mushroom Soup With Goat Cheese Croutons

Caramelized Onion And Portabella Mushroom Soup With Goat Cheese Croutons

Yields: 6 Servings

Eating this soup, it would be easy to imagine yourself at an outdoor bistro in Paris, yet it works just as well as a post-parade pick-me-up on Bourbon Street.

Ingredients for Soup:
1 1/2 pounds onions, halved and thinly sliced (about 5 cups)
1 1/2 pounds portabella mushrooms, stemmed, halved and cut into 1/4-inch strips
4 tbsps butter
4 sprigs thyme
1 tbsp sugar
3 tbsps Cognac or brandy
1/4 cup minced garlic
4 cups beef broth
4 cups vegetable broth
1/4 cup sherry
salt and cracked black pepper to taste

In a large, heavy-bottomed soup pot, melt 1 tablespoon butter over high
heat. Sauté onions, thyme and sugar 10 minutes or until onions begin to
soften. Reduce to low; cook 20 minutes or until onions are caramelized,
stirring occasionally. Transfer onion mixture to a medium bowl and set
aside. Melt remaining butter in same pot over medium-high heat. Add
mushrooms, and sauté 15 minutes or until soft. Blend in Cognac and garlic,
and stir an additional 30 seconds. Stir in onion mixture, beef broth,
vegetable broth and sherry. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low. Simmer 45
minutes or until onions are tender. Discard thyme sprigs. Season with salt
and pepper.

Ingredients for Croutons: 1 loaf French bread, sliced 1-inch thick 8 ounces
soft fresh goat cheese, room temperature

Method: Preheat broiler. Place cut croutons on large baking sheet. Spread
goat cheese on croutons. Broil 30 seconds or until cheese begins to brown.
Serve with soup.

Chef John Folse