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What’s for Dinner: French Onion Soup

Sophistimom’s Jaime Richardson shares a wintry recipe

french onion soup!

When living with littles, carpe diem doesn’t cut it. (Moods, whims, and tastes change so fast, you’ve gotta seize the seconds.)

Take a page from Jaime Richardson’s playbook, Celebrate Every Day. The Sophistimom blogger and single mother of three turns meals into mini events — creating menus, reading lists, and playlists for nonholidays like the first snowfall.

Tonight, we’re making her twist on the English pub classic, French onion soup, which she recommends pairing with Winnie the Pooh or A Wrinkle in Time to make the most of a chilly, stuck-inside afternoon.

It’s always good to keep things interesting at dinner, and this soup really delivers. Not only is it served straight from the oven, but it’s also loaded with chunks of crusty sourdough and lots of melty cheese. Kids love it for its mild but complex flavor.

English Pub Onion Soup
Makes six large bowls

Ingredients
1 loaf rustic sourdough bread, cut into 1-inch cubes
4 tbsp. unsalted butter
3 lbs. yellow onions, thinly sliced
Pinch of kosher salt, plus more for seasoning
6 c. homemade chicken stock (or good-quality canned chicken broth)
1 tbsp. all-natural bouillon paste
1 tbsp. rice wine vinegar
Freshly cracked pepper to taste
2 c. shredded Gruyere cheese

1. Preheat oven to 400°. Spread bread cubes in a single layer on a baking sheet, and toast in the oven for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside.

2. In a large pot set over medium-low heat, melt butter and add onions with a pinch of salt. Cover partially with a lid and let cook, stirring frequently, until onions are very tender, about 15 minutes.

3. Add chicken stock, bouillon paste, and vinegar. Let simmer 1-2 minutes and taste for seasoning. Add more kosher salt if needed and cracked pepper.

4. Ladle soup into ovenproof mugs or bowls set on a baking sheet, and top with the sourdough croutons and a handful of cheese on each serving.

5. Bake until cheese starts to bubble and turn golden brown. Serve hot.

Celebrate Every Day is available at amazon.com, $10.

Photo: Jaime Richardson / Courtesy of Globe Pequot Press