I have been agonizing over what to call this recipe. Agonizing to an embarrassing degree. I swear, sometimes I spend more time coming up with names for recipes than I do developing the recipes themselves. I feel like the name of this recipe is confusing. Is it a soup? Is it a sandwich? Well, it’s kind of both. It’s French Onion Soup with a twist.
You see, in traditional French Onion Soup, you make the soup and float a piece of crusty bread topped with cheese on top of it. And it’s delicious! This recipe is a little bit different, though. The bread, onions, and cheese are in grilled panini form. The (faux) beef broth is served on the side and you dip your sandwich into it. As you eat your panini, bits of onion, cheese, and bread fall into the broth so when you’ve finished off your sandwich, you have a little bowl of French Onion bliss waiting for you.
So is it a little confusing? Maybe. But it’s really good, I promise! My husband, who isn’t a huge fan of grilled cheese sandwiches, was really surprised how much these captured the flavor of French Onion Soup. As for me, I love anything involving melted cheese and caramelized onions, so I loved these sandwiches too. In fact, we loved them so much that we ended up having them for lunch two days in a row–they’re great comfort food for a cold winter day.
Is it a soup? Or is it a sandwich? It's both! These grilled panini sandwiches are full of caramelized onions and Gruyere cheese--it's French onion soup in sandwich form.
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 large onions, thinly sliced
- salt & pepper to taste
- 1/2 tsp dried thyme
- 4 ciabatta rolls, halved
- 1 c. shredded Gruyere cheese
- 4 c. no-beef broth, heated (you can find meatless beef broth at stores like Whole Foods)
- Heat olive oil in a large skillet on low heat. Add sliced onions and cook until caramelized about an hour and fifteen minutes, stirring frequently. (For detailed instructions, see yesterday's post on how to caramelize onions.) Remove from heat and stir in salt and pepper to taste and thyme.
- Heat panini press or grill on high. Divide caramelized onions onto bottom of rolls and top each one with 1/4 cup of cheese and top half of roll. Grill for 10-15 minutes or until cheese is melted and bread is golden-brown. Serve each sandwich with 1 cup of broth.