Bloggers tend to be in one of two camps when it comes to posting recipes about sandwiches, toasties, jaffles, rolls, etc ad nauseam – ‘Yes, let’s all do it’, or ‘No, are you kidding? That’s not even a recipe’.
But ultimately, most people just start making one or two sandwich fillings again and again because they are:
- Really, really yummy
- You remember how to make it off the top of your head because you’ve made it so often and it’s really not that hard
- You just want to throw something quick together
- Your care factor that day is quickly approaching zero
- All or non of the above.
We all need new sandwich filling inspiration every now and then, right?
April may be Grilled Cheese month, but today is Grilled Cheese DAY; and even though I still maintain that you can’t go wrong with a cream cheese, cheddar and tomato toastie, I thought we’d need something a little more special to celebrate the day with.
There are heaps of variations of French onion soup toasties out there, but I like this one as I don’t always have wine on hand to deglaze the pan and it doesn’t require beef stock for flavour – I use some balsamic vinegar glaze that then creates a tangy caramel onion filling that pairs nicely with the melted emmental.
There will be no soggy bread croutons in soup around here!
French Onion Soup Toastie
- 20g butter (divided)
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 3 brown onions (halved and then very finely sliced)
- ¼ cup fresh thyme leaves (loosely packed)
- Salt to taste
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar glaze*
- 4 slices of bread
- 100g emmental, gruyere or swiss cheese (finely grated)
- Over medium-high heat, melt the butter in a heavy-based pot with a lid and then add the oil. When starting to bubble, add the sliced onions and stir and agitate them continuously to separate the layers until the onions begin to sweat, about five minutes.
- Turn the heat down to low, add the thyme and salt, stir, then cover with the lid. Cook for at least 30 to 40 minutes, stirring the mixture every five minutes or so, until the onions turn a caramel colour and taste sweet. (Turning up the heat will burn, not caramelise the onions, so don’t try to rush the process.)
- When the onions are just about done, remove the lid, add the balsamic glaze to deglaze the pan and cook for a further 3 to 5 minutes or until golden and the liquid has been reduced. Keep warm and set aside.
- Melt the remaining butter in a large frying pan and toast one side of each slice of bread. Flip the slices and top two of the bread slices evenly with cheese and then the onion mixture. When the cheese just begins to melt, flip them over to toast the other side and allow the cheese to fully melt.
- Remove from the pan, cut in half and serve immediately with a green salad.
* If you can’t find or don’t have balsamic vinegar glaze, you can use balsamic vinegar to deglaze the pan, but you may need to cook the onion for a bit longer to reduce the liquid.