No Obstacle Too Big

Sweet Onion Soup-The Duo Dishes

What do you do when you want to make something so badly and you don’t have all the ingredients?  In fact, you really only have a couple of the ingredients.  From our last post, a few people said they just make it happen.  We like that idea.  In fact, we fully support it.  You can ball up the recipe in hand and toss it into the trash…or you can keep it movin’!  And by keep it movin’, we mean forge ahead into culinary unknown.  We wanted to make a soup.  We wanted to make a French onion soup.  We had no yellow onions, only a couple of lonely red onions and a shallot.  That made us remember we’ve seen a red onion soup before that sounded pretty good.  The best we could do was try our best, right? And then, as Carrie Underwood said, ‘Let Jesus take the wheel!’

Sweet Onion Soup 2-The Duo Dishes

There’s really no way to call this French onion soup as that would probably be sacriligious to the original. It’s just something thrown together with hopes that it would be similar in the end. It was a tasty surprise. Salty, crunchy crackers make up the crust and creamy brie cheese bubble on top.  The sweet red onions’ flavors really shone through.  A sweet onion soup. That’s what we’ll call it.

Sweet Onion Soup 3-The Duo Dishes

Sweet Onion Soup – Serves 4 to 6
2 red onions, sliced
1 large shallot, sliced
2 tablespoons butter
4 cups water
2 bouillon cubes
1 1/2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 bay leaves
1 tablespoon thyme, minced
6 ounces brie, softened
2-3 tablespoons half and half
20-25 water crackers, crushed
2 teaspoons salt

1. Drop butter in a large pan and add onions and bay leaves. Cook approx. 5 minutes. Add brown sugar and continue cooking on medium low heat for 15-20 min, or until onions go translucent.

2. As onions cook, set a pot on the stove and add water, thyme and bouillon cubes. Bring to a boil. Crush bouillon as water heats. Allow to boil for 5-7 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to steep.

3. When onions are translucent, pour broth into onions. Add salt.  Cover and allow to cook another 10 minutes or so.

4. As soup cooks, carefully whisk half and half into brie. (We went with 2 tablespoons to maintain a ‘ploppable’ consistency.). Set aside.

5. Remove bay leaves.  Carefully ladle soup into individual ramekins or one baking dish. Top with crushed crackers, then brie mixture.

6. Bake for 5-7 minutes, or until top begins to brown, in a preheated oven at 500 degrees. Serve immediately.

Click HERE for the printable recipe.


44 thoughts on “No Obstacle Too Big

  1. I love how you just made it happen in this! I imagine that in France and surrounding areas that the people would use any kind of onions on hand. Red onions are sweet and turn a pretty pink color when cooked down so you soup looks really great too!

    In response to a question you asked me,

    Kasseri is a medium hard cheese with a soft texture and a hard rind (think provolone in hardness) made of unpasteurized sheep’s milk with sometimes goat milk mixed in. The use of fresh unpasteurized milk is necessary to get the correct flavor/texture and it is aged for at least four months to develop the flavor. Traditionally, this cheese is eaten (I didn’t know this) in sandwiches or in the kasseropita pie (Turkish cheese pie).

  2. I have to say, and you know I ‘wheel’…that looks freakin awesome you two…anything with onions is alright with moi!

  3. Great improvisation! Thankfully for me the grocery store is about 5 minutes away so I can usually put my culinary adventures on hold to get what I need.

  4. I tend to cower in the face of missing ingredients, but you guys are good! I wish I had the culinary mettle that you have, and I feel like maybe I’m getting some inspiration from these awesome posts! As usual, your recipe looks and sounds amazing.

  5. A perfect recipe for winter times. I love everything with onion. Never tried the soup, but now I have a great recipe.

  6. Not having an ingredient only makes things more fun! I love that you used brie in this!! I’ve been looking for some good recipes to play around with brie with! SO TASTY!!!!

  7. I like that your attitude is just to go for it. If it’s a small substitution I make due but otherwise I tend to go out and get the rest of the ingredients. I guess I’m not much of a risk taker. Nice post.

  8. I like red onions better than yellow, so I would probably try this!

    I liked to part where you said “Jesus take the wheel!” Too funny! My sister and I say that to each other all the time! LOL

    I usually forge ahead when I don’t have all the ingredients, and I am successful about 80% of the time. I made zucchini apple muffins over the weekend, that were a disaster! They never would cook on the inside and I cooked them so long, the outside was black, but the inside was mush!!

    I like your attitude in the kitchen though, just go for it!

  9. i loooove onion! and i think sweet onion soup sounds like heaven in a bowl. 🙂

    may i add you to my blogroll? i love seeing your incredibly talented recipes.

  10. Brie in Onion Soup? That’s brilliant. I’m sure it was even better than the Swiss Cheese original. Sometimes the best recipes are those that are improvised greatly. Good joB!

  11. =O
    This looks even BETTER than those other original soups… oops, was that total sacrilege or what? I don’t care, THIS LOOKS BETTER!!! Ahh!!

  12. whatever you call that – it looks delicious! i love onions!

    have you ever read michele richard’s cookbook “happy in the kitchen”? he has a recipe in there for fettucini alfredo where you use sliced onions instead of pasta. it freaked me out the first time i made it, but now i kinda love it!

  13. Haha I love it. The first paragraph made me laugh, and the food looks awesome.

    Oh, and hummus is probably one of the greatest things to ever happen to me 🙂


  14. For some reason, I find it more exciting when an improvisation works beautifully like this than when I get a good result from following a recipe.

  15. Kudos on getting the topping right on this soup. Whenever I try an onion soup with cheese on top, the cheese turns into a blob! 🙂

  16. Looks like Jesus really did take that wheel! Amazing!

    I am definitely trying to do more of this kind of cooking — hopefully my results will be as good as yours!

  17. I love how you improvised! And red onions are my favorite so I imagine this to be delicious. It is kind of fun sometimes to be creative with what’s in the cupboard -that’s how great recipes are born! 🙂 We had a LONG Michigan winter again and I did this a lot when I didn’t want to run to the store in the snow.

  18. That half and half brie sauce sounds great. Last night I made a similar sauce for lamb with gorgonzola.. I love sauces and you did a great job interpreting a recipe!

  19. Tasty surprises are always good surprises! It might not be like the original, but it is certainly an original recipe :-p “Let Jesus take the wheel” LOL too funny 😀

  20. Sounds good to me! Red onions are a good time, I could go for a bowl of that right now. It’s cold and rainy here, perfect soup weather.

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