Because of the diverse nature of the many different restaurants and chefs Brian Henry has worked under he is highly proficient at a wide range of cuisines.

Brian’s cooking is seasonal, inventive and smart, but in no way unapproachable or fussy. When he is coaxed out of the kitchen and starts talking about food, his passion and knowledge are instantly recognizable.

"Chef Brian Henry cooked a series of delicious appetizers for us as we sat around a table in the kitchen". Thanks

Tony Aspler, Wine writer

“Chef Brian Henry puts one hundred percent of his energy into going all the way.”

Birgit Moenke, Editor Stir Media Read More Reviews

Gastronomically yours,

Lyonnaise Onion Soup

Historically onions and soup have been considered to be poor people’s food. Put the two together and you have a poor person’s meal, whose origins go back pre- medieval times. With the holiday season coming to a close and the credit card bills coming in you can very well call me a pauper and serve up some onion soup.

 Onion soup began an evolution of its own in the 18th century when the French started to serve caramelized onions in beef broth more commonly known today as French onion soup. With its common ingredients, hearty feel and ease of preparation this soups origins can probably be traced to Lyon, France. Often stale pieces of bread crust were floated on the surface of the soup. Later on the stale bread was replaced by the more flavorfully seasoned crouton and topped with the Swiss gruyère cheese. This is then served in oven proof bowls that are fired to melt the cheese.

French onion soup with its Lyonnaise background is found on menus throughout Lyon. It is typically served in a type of restaurant known as a bouchon. A Bouchon is not known for nouvelle or haute cuisine; they are famed for their warm and friendly if not family atmosphere.

Onions appear in almost every cuisine found on the planet. There are over 500 varieties of onions of which only twenty are used for culinary purposes. They are most often used as a sub-ingredient to help build the foundation for great tasting soups and sauces.

  You can use any variety and/or combination of onions or cheese to make the following recipe for French Onion Soup. Locally raised onions, garlic and leeks are available year round in our local grocers produce section.

 

French Onion Soup

1 pound Spanish onions peeled, cut in ½, and sliced thin

½ pound leeks cut in ½, and sliced thin

1 pound red onions, cut in ½, and sliced thin

¼ cup butter or olive oil

1 heaping tablespoon of minced garlic

1 tbsp sugar

2 tbsp flour

4 oz white or red wine

2 liters beef stock

1 tbsp tomato paste

1 tsp of dried rosemary leaves

1 Bay leaf

12 toasted slices of French baguettes

2 cups Swiss cheese, grated shopping list

3 teaspoons parmesan cheese, grated shopping list

Method: Sautee the above ingredients in a med-sized stock pot cooking over medium heat. Cover pot with a lid & stir frequently until the onions begin to appear translucent. Add sugar and flour, reduce heat to low and mix well until the flour cooks out in the roux, stir continuously and do not allow to burn.  Stir in the wine, stock and tomato paste. Stir mixture well and allow to simmer over medium heat for 10-15 minutes. Divide soup into six oven proof bowls.Place two slices of toasted baguette onto the top of each portion of soup andsprinkle each serving with even amounts of Gruyere and Parmesan cheese.

Place the soup bowls onto a baking sheet and place in oven under preheated broiler.

Broil until the cheese melts – watch soup closely- depending on your broiler and how far the rack is from the heat, it can take anywhere from 30 to 90 seconds.

Serve immediately with lots of fresh bread.

Gastronomically yours,

Chef Brian Henry

 

 

 

 

 

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