Help me build a French Onion soup that isn't French Onion soup
January 20, 2011 8:22 PM   Subscribe

Please give me some ideas/recipes for soup that is built like French Onion (broth+bread+cheese).

Please give me some ideas for soup that's built like French onion. Specifically, a brothy soup with some sustenance bits, a crunchy bready layer, and a broiled cheesy topping. I thought of minestrone, topped with garlic toast(?) and Parmesan but that's all I could come up with.

Any other ideas? I'm open to any meat or vegetarian options. Just no cream-based soups, please. I prefer a nice broth that gets thickened by toast/crackers.
posted by dogmom to Food & Drink (18 answers total) 27 users marked this as a favorite
Perhaps a beef or chicken bouillon with raincoast crisps and a melted Brie top?

or, for the university student, Mr. Noodles topped with a bagel and cream cheese?
posted by sarastro at 8:34 PM on January 20, 2011

I made something like that tonight and it was excellent. Sort of a stracciatelli or Italian wedding soup:

Put chicken stock in a pot, add a few handsful of chiffonaded collard greens or escarole, some bits of chicken, boil it and add acini pepe noodles and two beaten eggs. Layer that over crusty bread and top it with provolone, top that with romano, broil it. You can sub too, gnocci for the noodles, mini meatballs for the chicken, etc etc etc. Whatever you like. Hopefully you have a nice thick soup crock with a handle, that definitely adds to the experience. I really love taking a slice of Italian or French bread or a bagel and grilling it till it has black hash marks on it for the bread layer. I don't eat the bread myself but everyone in my family goes nuts over it.
posted by iconomy at 8:34 PM on January 20, 2011 [3 favorites]

Ribollita seems like a good option!
posted by joeyjoejoejr at 8:44 PM on January 20, 2011

Minestrone is almost there already -- soup with cheese sprinkled on top -- just add the bread, increase the cheese and broil to melt.
posted by Quinbus Flestrin at 8:47 PM on January 20, 2011

A simple change to the recipe is to use fennel for some or all of the onion, and chicken stock instead of beef. A little lighter, with a more delicate flavor - but delicious. (if you put cognac in your onion soup, use Pernod instead).
posted by OneMonkeysUncle at 8:55 PM on January 20, 2011 [2 favorites]

Tortilla soup is topped with cheese and cornchips.
posted by pickypicky at 8:56 PM on January 20, 2011 [2 favorites]

I have made a soup inspired by French onion, but with a can of condensed tomato soup added as well as some extra spices: paprika and celery seed, usually. I top it with bread of various kinds with either mozzarella or provolone cheese melted on top. This is my very favorite soup.
posted by galadriel at 9:21 PM on January 20, 2011

A little off the mark but Pappa al Pomodoro?
posted by bz at 9:32 PM on January 20, 2011

I have a friend who makes french onion style soup but with garlic instead of onion. It is intense, but so delicious with bread and a milder melty cheese. Yum (the garlic smell after eating, even the next day can be intense!)

We do tortilla soup or sopa de lima with chips and cheese like pickypicky suggests!

I am pretty sure your idea for broth enhanced with crackers/crouton/bread is something that can be done with ANY thing... adding bread and cheese is always a good idea! I don't think you can go wrong!
posted by Swisstine at 11:06 PM on January 20, 2011 [1 favorite]

I've never made this but when I saw Jamie Oliver make it, I thought it looked incredible.
posted by puckupdate at 3:43 AM on January 21, 2011

Tomato soup + croutons + cheese is a classic.
posted by drlith at 3:54 AM on January 21, 2011

Broccoli cheese soup in a bread bowl might qualify for you if a creamy broth is ok. One place I had it melted the cheese in the bottom of the bread bowl instead of on top, which lines it to make it more liquid-proof.
posted by Serene Empress Dork at 4:47 AM on January 21, 2011

Czech garlic soup
posted by hannahlambda at 4:56 AM on January 21, 2011 [1 favorite]

Tomato Bread Soup and I prefer Ina Garten's version of Ribollita.
posted by shoesietart at 6:42 AM on January 21, 2011

The 1957 Time Capsule FPP from yesterday just happens to have a recipe just like this, called ”Tuppa all Vinezeana (Venetian Soup).”
posted by CheeseLouise at 7:35 AM on January 21, 2011

Response by poster: Thank you all very much- these look wonderful!
I will definitely be cooking this weekend!
posted by dogmom at 12:50 PM on January 21, 2011

The December issue of Saveur has this recipe for Soupe Crasse. While I haven't tried it yet, it looks amazing. Bonus: you can impress your friends with your newfound knowledge of Occitan cuisine.
posted by sugarbomb at 2:08 PM on January 21, 2011

The heavenly Soupe de Poisson has a thick broth with toasted bread spread with a spicy mayo floating on top and gruyere passed at the table. You could add the cheese and broil before serving.
posted by CunningLinguist at 7:07 PM on January 21, 2011

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