I’m such a fan of an old fashioned recipe for French Onion Soup that this was a leap of faith and oh my…this French Country Short Ribs and Onion Soup is to die for; adding short ribs was heavenly!
It’s been awhile; I don’t think in all the many years I’ve been blogging that I have not introduced something new in such a long period of time. Whether planned or not, I obviously needed a break from the never ending stress of this past year; I’ve just finished sleeping almost 5 days straight when I’m lucky if normally I can get 6 hours of sleep each night.
This is unheard of! I had been feeling a bit better and thought the weeks of dealing with pneumonia were finally over when the devastation from losing Abbie just took it’s toll and it came raging back with a vengeance. I was read the riot act when I finally went to the doctor again; get rest or get admitted to the hospital. Yikes! I shut everything off and tried to sleep and it was as if I was drugged.
I slept 21 straight hours that first day and then again…and again and now here I am feeling just a bit better; eager to grab hold of life again and yet wary enough to know I had better take it slow. I can no longer say I haven’t been sick in years; this had made up for every doggone one of them.
Maybe it is somehow prophetic that the one thing I managed to get made right before this downturn was this amazing French Country Short Rib and Onion Soup. It has sustained me for the past two weeks and yet still I was sorry when I finished that last bowl. I have a fabulous recipe for French Onion Soup that is such a great legacy from my hometown of St. Louis and I still love it but I can not deny; introducing short ribs into the mix has created not just some yummy beef to sink your teeth into but the most amazing broth ever. OMG good.
Lucky for me, I have the sweetest friends in the meat biz at 5280Meat. Wouldn’t you love to open a box delivered to your door with those goodies shown above? The most gorgeous short ribs, sausage, pork chops and bacon all nicely refrigerated and boxed just for me. It was a picker upper for sure and I wanted to do justice to the quality of this meat when I made something; how fortuitous that the recipe for this soup pretty much landed in my lap.
Janis, a friend on Facebook had just uploaded this photo of the same dish after she had completed it and I could almost taste it. Hers was fit for a crowd and I loved both how she presented it and some of the minor revisions she had made to the original recipe; adding in a couple of cups of caramelized onion slices really did give it more of the French Onion Soup feel.
I took it a bit further even. My time honored recipe calls for refrigerating overnight and I’ve always trusted it. Not only do the flavors meld during that time, but it’s so easy to scoop off the fat that has hardened on the top. It means planning a day in advance but it’s all I know and I think totally worth it.
Adding to the moment of ‘this was meant to be’ was finding a box of Roth cheeses on my front porch. They could not have been more perfect. Although this recipe calls for Gruyere, that designation is much like the one that insists that only Champagne from one region in France can be called Champagne.
While only cheese from one region in France can be called Gruyere, other cheeses carry very similar flavor profiles so this American made cheese with the same nutty, creamy taste are designated differently but still carry a similar flavor profile. I shredded a combination of the Grand Cru and the Grand Cru Reserve for the cheese topping and truth be told I could have eaten that wonderful, melty, cheesy topper on a piece of toast all by itself.
I don’t know about you but for me ‘Made in Wisconsin’ says way more to me than made in France. I’ve been to Wisconsin and it’s not all cheeseheads; it’s simply some of the best cheese in this country!
Maybe it’s starting to warm up where you are but nights are still cool in most places. I just saw a photo of a fireplace roaring with a bouquet of tulips in front of it…so don’t discount this French Country Short Ribs and Onion Soup and save it for next year. Make it now; so soul satisfying and I think a perfect antidote for a lousy winter; I am feeling a bit better now!
French Country Short Rib Onion Soup
3 hrs 25 mins
- 4 lbs beef short ribs
- Kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper (to taste)
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 large onion, diced
- 2 carrots, peeled and diced
- 4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
- 1 cup red wine
- 1 14oz can diced tomatoes
- 4 cups beef broth
- 1 Tbsp fresh rosemary, minced
- 2 Tbsp fresh thyme, minced
To Finish and Serve
- 2 Tbsp Butter
- 4 Onions thinly sliced
- 1 French baguette, cubed and toasted
- 8oz Gruyere cheese, shredded
- Preheat oven to 325º. Season short ribs with salt and pepper and dredge in flour.
- Heat olive oil in a large Dutch oven over medium high heat. Cook short ribs in the oil until golden brown and crusty; about four minutes per side. Remove from oil and put on plate. Set aside.
- Reduce heat to medium and cook onions and carrots in leftover fat from ribs. Cook for five minutes. Add garlic, red wine, tomatoes, broth, herbs and short ribs. Cover with lid and place in oven. Cook for two and a half hours or until meat falls off the bones.
- Remove meat and place on a dish to cool; once cooled remove and shred the beef and return to the pot.
- Refrigerate the pot (overnight is great if possible) until the fat has hardened on top and the flavors have had time to meld. Using a large spoon, remove the solid fat on top and discard.
- Warm the pot with meat and vegetables over medium low heat.
- Heat a large skillet over med heat and add 2 Tbsp butter and the sliced onions and saute until onions are caramelized and golden brown (10-15 minutes).
- Add the caramelized onions to the warmed stew and stir. Portion into oven safe bowls. Top with a toasted bread slice and shredded cheese.
- Broil for approximately 5 minutes until cheese is brown and bubbly. WATCH CLOSELY!
I was provided with samples of the the Roth Grand Cru cheeses however all commentary is my own.