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French Onion Soup...

The origin of onion soup is rooted in two legends. The first story credits its origin with King Louis XV of France who returned late one night to his hunting lodge, and all that was on hand were onions, butter and champagne. He mixed them together and created the first French Onion Soup. Another legend states that decades ago, farmers in Les Halles, the old market place of Paris, would sip on huge mugs of boiling onion soup to keep warm while setting up for the mornings activities.

The perfect complement to any meal or by itself, this popular flavorful broth with zesty sautéed onions is topped with melted Gruyère cheese for a truly wonderful taste experience.

French Onion Soup with Gruyère Croutons (Serves 4)

3 tbsp (45 ml) butter or margarine
4 large Spanish onions, thinly sliced
2 tsp (125 ml) all-purpose flour
1 carton (900 ml) Knorr Beef Broth
1/2 cup (125 ml) white wine
1 bay leaf
1/4 tsp (1 m) brandy
4 1/2 inch (1 cm) thick slices of French bread, toasted
1 1/2 cups (375 m) Gruyère cheese

In large saucepan, melt butter and sauté onions on medium heat, stirring frequently 35-40 minutes, until golden brown. Add flour, and cook while stirring for 1-2 minutes. Stir in white wine, Knorr Beef Broth and bay leaf, scraping up any bits stuck to the bottom of the pan.

Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer covered for 15 minutes. Remove bay eaf. Stir in brandy; season to taste with salt and pepper.

Preheat broiler. Ladle soup evenly into 4 broiler proof bowls. Top each bowl with a slice of toasted bread and grated cheese. Place on baking sheet about 4"-5" (10-13 cm) from heat source and broil until cheese melts and bubbles.

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