At our little brother’s first communion party a couple weeks ago, we served these lovely French onion toasts- or should I say, our little cousin served them! She walked around with a plate of them and helped serve them to guests, and it was super cute. These toasts were the hit of the party, and of course the server was a nice plus as well. The toasts have all the flavors of French onion soup but with less effort and in the perfect sized portion to serve as an appetizer. These were also very convenient to serve at a party since we caramelized the onions and grated the cheese the night before, and all we had to do at the end was slice the baguette, top the slices with toppings, bake them, and serve. These were so fantastic and we cannot wait to make them again!
French Onion Toasts
Recipe from The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook
Makes 32 toasts
2 tablespoons butter
1tablespoon olive oil
2 pounds (about 4 medium-large) yellow onions, cut into dice of about 1/3 inch
1/2 teaspoon table salt
Pinch of sugar
1 tablespoon Cognac, brandy, or vermouth (optional- we skipped it and the toasts were delicious)
1 cup low sodium beef, veal or mushroom stock or broth (we used beef broth)
Freshly ground black pepper
Thirty-two 1/2-inch-thick slices from a long baguette
2 cups (8 ounces) finely grated Gruyere cheese
Melt together the butter and olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onions to the pan, toss them with the butter and oil, reduce the heat to medium or medium-low, and cover the pan. Cook the onions for 15 minutes, then remove the lid, stir in the salt and sugar, and saute without the lid for about 10 to 15 minutes, until the onions are fully caramelized and have taken on a deep-golden color.
Pour in alcohol (if you’re using it) and the stock, then turn the heat all the way up and scrape up any brown bits stuck to the pan. Simmer the mixture until the broth almost completely disappears, about 5 to 10 minutes. Adjust the salt, if needed, and season with freshly ground black pepper.
Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Dollop each round of bread with about a tablespoon of the onion mixture . Add 1 tablespoon or so of cheese and bake until the cheese is fully melted. Serve immediately. Enjoy!