Brian and James Murphy, co-owners
Mrs. Murphy and Sons Irish Bistro
A crock of slow-simmered onion soup can warm up the chilliest winter night. At Mrs. Murphy and Sons in Chicago, the kitchen puts an Irish spin on the French classic, enriching the broth with stout beer and blanketing the top with melted white cheddar cheese instead of Gruyere or Swiss.
2 oz. vegetable oil
5 yellow onions, peeled and sliced
2 qt. chicken stock
2 cups veal demiglace
1 cup stout beer
1 oz. chopped fresh thyme leaves
1 tsp. minced garlic
Salt and white pepper, to taste
16 slices French baguette, sliced ½-in. thick
2 cups shredded white cheddar cheese
1. In saucepot, heat oil over medium-low heat. Add onions; cook about 1 hour, stirring as needed, until onions are caramelized.
2. Add stock, demiglace, stout, thyme and garlic. Simmer for 2 hours, skimming oil off top as needed. Season to taste with salt and white pepper.
3. Per serving, ladle hot soup into individual ovenproof crocks. Toast bread slices and place 2 in each crock; sprinkle with ¼ cup cheese. Place under broiler for 2 minutes or until cheese is brown and bubbly.
Photograph courtesy of National Onion Association