Thursday, February 7, 2013

Featured Recipe: Sweet Basil's Onion Soup

I am really excited to be sharing this recipe with you today courtesy of Chef and owner Dave Becker from Sweet Basil located in Needham, MA. 

Featuring an ever-changing menu of Italian cuisine with hand-made pastas and ingredients sourced from local New England farms, Sweet Basil has a loyal following of repeat customers who come back time and time again for the quality food and comforting atmosphere.

Chef Dave recently launched his brand new cookbook, Stewed, featuring handmade takes on classic soups, stews, and braises. Using simple fresh ingredients, he builds on flavor and focuses on fundamental cooking techniques. 

This kicks off a trio of posts you will find here for the next few Thursday's that will be focused around Sweet Basil and Chef Dave's Stewed cookbook. With what seems like never ending cold winter weather what's a better way to warm up than with some hearty soup recipes?

I hope you enjoy them as much as I do!

Photo credit: Nina Gallant

Sweet Basil's Onion Soup:

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 4 Spanish onions, sliced thin
  • 2 tablespoon garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1 ½ cups tawny port wine
  • 1 quart Veggie, Beef or Chicken Stock
  • 2 tablespoons plum tomatoes, ¼” dice
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • Kosher salt and cracked black pepper
  • 4 slices stale bread, ½” dice
  • 1 ½ cups grated Gruyère or Manchego cheese
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Garnish: Sliced scallions, Grated Parmesan cheese

In a large saucepan, melt the butter over low heat. As soon as it melts, add the onions, increase the heat to medium-low, and saute for 30 minutes, or until the onions begin to brown. Add the garlic, sage, and rosemary, saute for 1 or 2 minutes or until the garlic just begins to brown, and then stir in the balsamic vinegar. Add the port wine, and reduce until the pan is almost dry. Add the stock of your choosing, along with the plum tomatoes and the maple syrup. Bring the soup to a boil, remove from the heat, and season to your liking with salt and pepper.

Meanwhile, arrange the bread chunks on a broiling pan, sprinkle with the grated Gruyère or Manchego cheese, drizzle with some olive oil, and toast until the cheese is bubbling and brown.

Evenly distribute the soup among serving bowls, top with the cheesy bread, garnish with
scallions and Parmesan, and serve.

Sweet Basil is located at 942 Great Plain Ave., Needham, MA 02492.

If you are interested in purchasing Chef Dave's newest cookbook, Stewed, or any of his cookbooks, you can find them here:

Chef Dave will also be hosting a cooking demonstration and book signing on Wednesday, February 27th from 6:00 - 9:00pm at Boston University. If you are interested in attending you can purchase tickets here:

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