Guinness French Onion Soup with sourdough Ciabatta bread (paired with Guinness)
onions,4 sliced (we used mostly red onions)
garlic, 5 cloves, minced
bacon fat (or oil of your choice)
stock, 6-7 cups (we used meat bone broth)
Guinness, 2-3 (or 4 or 5) bottles (one in the soup, the rest for drinking)
Bread, thick cut slices (we used homemade ciabatta made with sourdough starter)
Irish cheddar cheese, 1-2 cups, shredded
Add a tablespoon or two of bacon fat (or other oil) to a dutch oven pot. Once it has melted, add in the onions. Cook until the onions are only about 2 cups in volume (this takes about 45 minutes and a small amount of patience, but it is worth it). Add in the garlic sometime during this cooking down process. Deglaze the pan with some water and the Guinness. Drink a Guinness while you are waiting for the onions to be all the way cooked down and caramelized and delicious looking. (Actually, drink two. This bit takes a while.) Once you’ve aded the beer and deglazed, go ahead and add the stock (and any seasoning that you want). Bring this to a boil and let all the flavors come together. When the soup tastes ready, dish into oven safe bowls. Turn on your broiler. Add a couple slices of bread to the top of the bowls. Put the cheese on top of the bread. Set under the broiler until the cheese gets bubbly and delicious (2-4 minutes- WATCH it, or it will burn). Serve with another Guinness and enjoy.
Lisa: The beer flavor was distinct in the soup, but not overwhelming. I think the sourdough bread balanced nicely with the flavors of the soup, and of course Irish cheddar brought the whole dish together.
Gary: It’s a good thing Guinness is a low alcohol beer. From start to finish I counted 5 bottles in my recycling bin. The roasty toasty malty flavor of the beer paired beautifully with the roasty toasty malty flavor of the cooked onions. For the record, Lisa drank none of the Guinness.
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