By Elena Johnson
My second French recipe is a traditional French onion soup. After tasting some of the amazing dairy-free cheeses available in Europe, I was eager to make a rich, savory soup covered in melted cheese similar to the one I tasted in Paris. This soup is surprisingly easy to make, with only a few basic ingredients. A food mill is the best way to puree the broth full of onion and garlic, but a high-speed blender should also get the job done.
French Onion Soup
2 Tbsp. canola oil
2 large yellow onions, thinly sliced
3 cloves garlic, smashed
6 cups vegan chicken or vegetable stock, such as Better Than Bouillon No Chicken Base
Salt and pepper to taste
16 – 20 slices of a baguette
1 cup vegan cheese, such as Daiya Mozzarella Style Shreds or Provolone Style Slices
Heat oil in large stock pot over medium-high heat. Add onions and stir to coat in oil. Cook for 20 minutes stirring occasionally, until all onions are well-browned. Add garlic and broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, place baguette slices in 400°F oven for 5 – 10 minutes until crisp and golden brown. Set aside.
Remove soup from heat and gradually ladle into a food mill set up over a large bowl. Run all of the soup through the food mill, resulting in a smooth and flavorful broth. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed.
Place 4 oven-proof bowls on a baking sheet. Add a few slices of baguette to the bottom of each bowl along with a few tablespoons of cheese. Ladle broth evenly over the bread and cheese in each bowl. Top each bowl with 2 slices of baguette covered with a few more tablespoons of cheese. Place baking sheet in oven so that bowls sit under the broiler until cheese melts, approx. 3 – 7 minutes.
Remove from oven and carefully serve bowls on small plates, warning guests that the bowls are extremely hot. Serve with additional baguette slices, if desired.
About the Author
Elena Johnson is a second-generation Filipino American living in Baltimore, MD. As a vegan chef and caterer she has been reinventing her family’s recipes and sharing them with friends, relatives, and those interested in vegetarian cooking. Elena is also the Special Projects Manager at Compassion Over Killing, a national animal advocacy organization focusing on cruelty to animals in agriculture and promoting vegetarian eating as a way to build a kinder world for all. Elena combines her passion for vegetarian food with a love of teaching by offering cooking demonstrations to the public. To learn more about why she went veg, visit TryVeg.com. Questions/feedback: email firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow Elena on Twitter: @ElenaEJohnson.