Recipe: Braised Bacon & Onion Soup
A recent trip to RGE RD inspired me to mess around with a classic French onion soup. We had ordered the Road Trip, a six-course blind tasting menu, which included a small pot of seafood paella that was topped with the most incredible bite of braised bacon and onion. I couldn’t wait to get home and try to recreate that flavour.
As a second generation Canadian with Ukrainian roots, I grew up on a hearty diet of perogies smothered in sautéed bacon and onions. The smell of bacon and onions cooking is instant comfort me, and the aroma of caramelized onions and bacon simmering in pot of soup is equally appealing. It may take some time to simmer, but topping this bacon & onion soup with bread and melted cheese is instant comfort. Want to make French onion soup better? Just add bacon.
Braised Bacon & Onion Soup
8 slices of thick cut bacon, diced
4 yellow onions, halved and sliced
10 thyme sprigs
4 cups of chicken or vegetable stock
4 slices of thick cut bread
2 cup of cheddar cheese, shredded
salt and pepper to taste
In a large pot, cook bacon over medium heat for 5 minutes. Add the onions thyme, salt and pepper, stir to combine. Cover with a lid slightly ajar and cook, stirring occasionally, for half an hour. Remove the lid and continue to stir onions occasionally for 30 – 45 minutes. Be sure to mix in any brown bits on the bottom of the pot, onions will become soft and caramelized.
Add the stock, bring to the boil, turn the heat down and simmer for at least 20 minutes.
Place oven rack to the top and turn the broiler on high. Ladle soup into four oven proof bowls, removing any thyme springs that remain. Top with bread and layer with shredded cheese. Place soup bowls on a baking sheet and grill in the oven until the cheese is melted and begins to bubble. Be sure to watch as the cheese can burn quickly. Remove from the oven and enjoy!