Creamy French Onion Casserole

2014-01-08
  • Yield : 13" x 9" casserole
  • Servings : 8
  • Prep Time : 15m
  • Cook Time : 45m
  • Ready In : 60m

Reminiscent of French onion soup, this rich, filling casserole makes a great side dish for steak and a tossed salad.

It looks like entirely too many onions.

It looks like entirely too many onions.

 

All bechamel sauces begin the same way; whisk the flour into the melted fat in this case, butter.

All bechamel sauces begin the same way; whisk the flour into the melted fat in this case, butter.

 

Using broth instead of milk saves a little on calories and fat. Don't let the light color fool you. It has rich beef flavor.

Using broth instead of milk saves a little on calories and fat. Don’t let the light color fool you. It has rich beef flavor.

 

The onions wilt and the juices evaporate. The natural sugar in the onions is what causes the caramelized bits.

The onions wilt and the juices evaporate. The natural sugar in the onions is what causes the caramelized bits.

 

Bechamel and onions in the casserole.

Bechamel and onions in the casserole.

 

bread n cheese

Yummy melted cheese, toasted bread, and rich beefy onions.

Yummy melted cheese, toasted bread, and rich beefy onions.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 stick unsalted butter
  • 6 large yellow onions, thinly sliced (1/8")
  • 1-1/2 tsp salt
  • Bechamel:
  • 4 TB unsalted butter
  • 4 TB all purpose flour
  • 1 32 oz box of beef broth, divided
  • 6 french bread slices, crusts removed
  • 2 cups grated swiss cheese

Method

Step 1

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Melt butter in a large saute pan over medium high heat.

Step 2

Once butter is melted, add sliced onions. Stir to coat with butter. Add salt and stir again.

Step 3

Saute, stir, and turn onions for approximately 30 minutes. Using a pair of tongs makes stirring and turning an easy process.

Step 4

Meanwhile, prepare bechamel by melting butter in a medium saucepan.

Step 5

Whisk in flour. Cook for 3 minutes to remove floury taste and gritty texture.

Step 6

Gradually stir in 3-1/2 cups beef broth. Continue to cook an additional 5 minutes after adding the last of the broth until sauce is smooth and thickened.

Step 7

Once onions are reaching a golden color with some caramelization on the edges, the bottom of the pan will also be developing fond. Fond is the brown sticky stuff that is full of flavor. Add the remaining 1/2 cup of beef broth and stir vigorously to remove this fond.

Step 8

Turn heat up on onions and evaporate almost all of the liquid. When the remaining liquid is starting to become syrupy, turn off heat.

Step 9

Stir onions into bechamel scraping everything from the bottom of the pan.

Step 10

Transfer onion mixture to a 13" x 9" glass casserole. Top with bread. Sprinkle cheese over all concentrating on the bread.

Step 11

Bake uncovered in preheated oven until bubbly and cheese has sufficiently melted, about 45 minutes. Serve hot. Refrigerate leftovers. Leftovers can be pureed and thinned with a little water for a great soup.

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