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Dawn's Signature French Onion Soup

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French onion soup is one of the first dishes I ever mastered as a novice home chef. I am legendary among family and friends for this dish. Over the decades since first trying to make it, I have outright perfected onion soup! My self-taught culinary education and my journey to learn more about it in France has informed this recipe over the years. Now I am sharing my signature dish with you!

Dawn's Signature French Onion Soup


  • 6 large onions, thickly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons duck fat (you can substitute bacon fat)
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup brandy
  • 1 cup Merlot
  • 1 salted pork
  • 4 cloves garlic, whole
  • Bouquet Garnis containing 10 peppercorns, 2 bay leaves, 1 large thyme sprig and 1 clove
  • 6-8 cups homemade beef stock, depending on desired ratio of onions to broth
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • Baguette bread slices, 1 per serving, may grill first if desired
  • Grated Gruyere cheese, ¼ cup per serving


  1. In a large heavy-bottomed pot, melt all the duck fat and half the butter. Add onions and cook slowly on medium-low heat until translucent and caramelized, around 40 minutes. Add minimal salt at midway point.
  2. Add brandy and flambee onions (or cook slowly) until the alcohol has burned off and the liquid reduces to almost dry. Add remaining butter and whisk in flour rigorously to avoid lumps. Let flour cook for 2-3 minutes.
  3. Add wine and allow alcohol to cook out for 5-7 minutes. Salt and pepper minimally.
  4. Stir in stock, salted pork, garlic and bouquet garnis. Bring to boil then reduce to simmer for 2 hours.
  5. Add Worcestershire sauce. Remove bouquet garnis, garlic, and salted pork. Allow to cool and flavors to marry overnight.
  6. The following day, reheat soup on stove top. Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
  7. In oven-safe soup/gratin bowl, add soup to ¾ full. Place baguette slice on top and cover with heaping serving of cheese. Bake in oven until the cheese is melted and brown and bubbly, approximately 15-20 minutes.

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Dawn's Signature French Onion Soup

If you are interested in learning more about this recipe, or the many other recipes I have developed, please consider visiting my website 'Artful Cooking with Dawn'. There you will find blog posts, cooking videos, recipes, menus, and image gallery:

For many French-inspired dishes, you can read my "Bastille Day Feast" blog post:

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