French Onion Soup

In the 1970s every bride-to-be was almost guaranteed a set of French onion soup bowls as a shower gift. This lighter version of that popular soup is my idea of a comfort food.

Rich in flavour but lower in fat, calories, and sodium than the original artery-clogging, cheese-laden concoction, it still rings in with 14 g of total fat. Don’t worry about the trans fats in the recipe; they are the naturally occurring type found in milk products.

2 Tbsp (30 mL) organic extra-virgin olive oil
4 large organic cooking onions, thinly sliced to equal 4 cups (1 L)
2 Tbsp (30 mL) organic whole wheat flour
2 cloves organic garlic, minced
1/4 cup (60 mL) fresh parsley,  finely chopped
1/4 tsp (1 mL) dried thyme
1/4 tsp (1 mL) cracked pepper
4 cups (1 L) low-sodium organic chicken stock
4 slices organic whole wheat baguette
2 oz (50 g) Asiago cheese, grated, divided into 4 equal portions
2 oz (50 g) Gruyere cheese, grated,  divided into 4 equal portions

Heat a large pot over medium-high heat. Add oil and onions; saut?ntil golden brown, approximately 7 to 10 minutes. Stir often. Add flour and stir to coat onions. Add garlic, parsley, thyme, and cracked pepper. Stir well. Pour in chicken stock and stir, making sure to scrape up any bits that may have stuck to bottom of pot. Bring to boil, cover, reduce to low, and simmer for 45 minutes.

To serve: Place 1 slice of baguette in bottom of each soup bowl. Pour in 1 1/2 cups of soup. Sprinkle with 1/4 of the Asiago and the Gruy?.

Makes 4 – 1 1/2 cup (350 mL) servings.

Try adding low-sodium, canned Romano beans to make this a main-meal soup. Drain, rinse, and add with the chicken stock.

No baguette kicking around your pantry? Try adding croutons instead. Sprinkle them on top of the soup before serving.

Each serving contains: 265 calories; 10.8 g protein; 14.6 g total fat (7 g sat. fat, 3.3 g trans fat); 8.3 g carbohydrates; 2.5 g fibre; 864 mg sodium.

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