25 years ago I was dating someone whose best friend was a fabulous cook. The boyfriend and his best friend are long gone, but the recipes are still in my recipe file. This is a variation on French Onion Soup that I've always made--I wanted to make a soup with stuff I had in the house (because it's snowing and I don't feel like going out) that we could have for dinner tonight. —drbabs
onions cut in half pole to pole and sliced
clove garlic, minced or put through a garlic press
Saute onions and mushrooms in butter and olive oil. When they have begun to soften, add garlic, salt and pepper. Cover and cook for about 1/2 hour, scrape up fond, and continue sautéing (adding water if needed) and scraping up fond until onions and mushrooms are caramelized and dark brown in color.
Sprinkle 1 tablespoon of flour over onions and mushrooms and stir until smooth.
Add 1/2 cup sherry and 4 cups chicken stock/broth. Bring soup to boil, reduce heat, and simmer uncovered for 30 minutes.
While soup is simmering, bake baguette slices in a single layer at 400 degrees for 10 minutes, until dry and crisp.
Add 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar to soup; stir in. Taste and adjust seasonings.
Preheat broiler. Put soup into individual crocks (broiler-safe), top with one or two croutons and grated Gruyere. Broil till cheese is melted and bubbly, about 5 minutes and serve.