French Onion Soup

Recipe courtesy Tyler Florence

3 tablespoons bacon drippings (4 bacon strips)
6 Maui or Vidalia onions (3 pounds/8 cups), thinly sliced
2 large shallots, chopped
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 cup burgundy wine
2 teaspoons dried oregano
3 quarts chicken broth
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Sliced baquette, toasted and seasoned
Swiss cheese, grated
Flat-leaf parsley, chopped, for garnish

In a large saucepan over medium heat, fry 4 strips of bacon until crisp. Discard bacon. Saute onions and shallots in bacon fat until tender, about 10 minutes. Add balsamic vinegar, wine and oregano; cook for 30 minutes. Stir frequently until the onions caramelize and are golden brown.

Blend in chicken broth. Simmer gently for 1 hour, stir occasionally. Season with salt and pepper. Ladle soup into 4 ovenproof bowls. Float the croutons on top of soup and sprinkle with grated cheese. Broil until cheese melts. Garnish with flat-leaf parsley, serve immediately.

Yield: 4 servings

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