Taking the time to make homemade stock is well worth the effort. A dark, rich stock will provide more flavor and substance to the soup than canned stock will. Toasting the onion flakes gives the soup an intense onion essence that adds to the flavor of the fresh onions. If you cannot find Havarti cheese, Gruyere or Gouda are fine substitutes.
Prep time: 30 minutes
Cook time: 1 hour and 30 minutes
8 cups beef or duck stock
6 yellow onions
6 cloves garlic
6 ounces Havarti cheese
1/4 cup onion flakes
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon Tabasco sauce
1 tablespoon red miso paste
1 loaf French bread
1 bunch spring onions
1. Julienne the onions, mince the garlic and sweat them over low heat in a heavy-bottomed pot. Salt the onions, and cook them until they have almost broken down into a paste (about 30 minutes). The onions should caramelize and turn a light brown color.
2. In a dry pan, toast the onion flakes until they darken. Add them to the onion mixture.
3. In a separate pot, heat the stock to a simmer. Add the balsamic vinegar, Tabasco and miso paste. Add the stock to the onion mixture. Simmer it for 30 minutes and adjust the seasonings with salt and pepper to taste.
4. Toast slices of the French bread until they are dark brown. Fill bowls with the soup and top them with a slice of bread and shredded Havarti. Broil them until the cheese has browned, but be careful not to burn the topping. Garnish the soup with sliced green onions and serve.