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French Onion Soup
Serves 8 to 12 hungry people

3 pounds mixed onions, chopped thick (red, Spanish white, yellow)
4 oz (1 stick) butter
6 oz double or triple boch beer or strong stout
1 lb bread, broken into medium chunks
Chunks and slices of Swiss, Gruyere, or Monterey Jack cheese
64 oz veal stock or 32 oz beef stock and 32 oz chicken stock

Pour stock into large pot. Heat until boiling and then simmer.
In large pan, melt the butter then add onions. If not all of the
onions will fit into the pan at once, make two batches and split
the butter accordingly. Fry the onions until medium brown and an
obvious aroma is detected. *Do not* clean the pan and put onions
into already simmering stock. Without cleaning the pan, pour the
6 oz. of beer . Heat on low until the alcohol starts to burn off
and "scrape" the residue from the onions into the beer solution.
Let the solution sit on the heat for several minutes, until even
darker and more aromatic. Add only enough of the beer solution to
the rest of the soup according to your taste. I gave 6 oz. because
this is usually sufficient, but you may prefer less. Add seasonings
to soup according your taste. For example, I prefer ground black
pepper, Worcestershire sauce, and a little salt -- no big deal.
Preheat oven to broil (500F or 260C). Let soup sit on low heat to
give the flavors a chance to fuse together... this should not take
too long. Keep tasting the soup to judge as to when it's done!
Place chunks of bread into oven-safe bowls. Pour soup into bowls
and layer the cheese on top of soup, completely covering the soup.

In heated oven, set the filled bowls until cheese is lightly brown
(or hey, dark brown, depending on your taste). This usually takes
only about ten minutes but this will depend on the type of cheese
you're using. Keep an eye on it.


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