Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Slow Roasted Vidalia Onion Soup

Because Vidalia onion season is quickly coming to an end I decided to look for a recipe to turn them into soup. I just love the sweetness of this onion and although I'll always go cuckoo for a good bowl of French onion soup, I knew the Vidalia would shine as the key ingredient in a soup of its own.

Upon researching, I learned quite a bit about this famous Georgia onion. It turns out that the discovery of the Vidalia was actually a fluke. Farmers in the 1930s were disappointed with results from traditional row crops like cotton and tobacco. Looking for a new “cash cow,” they planted onions and were delighted with the unique sweetness of their new local treasure. And did ya know that they even have a mascot? Meet Yumion.

The recipe I ended up using was right under my nose all along. As I was opening the bag of onions I noticed a recipe posted right on that bag. How convenient was that!

The author of the recipe is Chef Michael Tuohy, owner of the Woodfire Grill in Atlanta, GA.

Slow Roasted Vidalia Onion Soup

6 medium Vidalia onions, outer layers removed
1/4 cup canola or grapeseed oil
2 leeks, white part only, chopped
2 ribs celery, chopped
2 quarts chicken stock
1 cup sweet sherry
1 cup heavy cream (I used half and half)
2 Tbsp fined chopped fresh thyme
salt and pepper
1 bunch fresh chives for garnish

Wrap each onion separately in aluminum foil and place in a 300 degree oven until onions feel tender all the way through, about 1 1/2 to 2 hours. Heat oil in a large pot. Add leek and celery; cook until softened but no browned. Remove onions from foil, quarter and add to pot. Add chicken stock and sherry. Simmer about 45 minutes. Stir in cream and thyme. Remove from heat. Working in batches, puree mixture in a blender until smooth. Add salt and pepper to taste. Garnish each serving with chives. Makes 12 servings.

I really enjoyed the flavor of this soup, and I can see it as being a wonderful first course dish. However, since I was serving it as the featured item for lunch, I decided to boil some cubed potatoes and noodles in some chicken broth, then added them to the pot to make a more substantial meal-like soup. I've got German hausfrau written all over me, don't I.


HoneyB said...

I can imagine how this taste! I love using vidalia onions! Love your setting!

Mags said...

Thanks HoneyB!