On Saturday morning I was sitting at my daughter's gymnastics class with my iPad so I could browse recipes to finalize my Father's Day Menu. I only had a small bowl of yogurt that morning, and my daughter claimed my Kind bar as her own before class, so I was starving. Looking at mouth-watering food pics while hungry is pure torture, especially when I was searching for some sort of bruschetta or crostini using Gruyere cheese. So many pictures of gooey melted cheese and crusty bread. Why was I doing this to myself??
After pulling myself together and focusing, I decided on a recipe for French Onion Cheese Bread that I found on the web site foodiecrush. Upon reading it I figured that it would taste like French onion soup just without the broth, and I was right. The French bread base is the crouton, and then there is a layer of creamy and nutty melted Gruyere cheese followed by some sweet caramelized onions. I served these as an app but can also see them being a great side.
Caramelizing the onions takes a while, but once that is done (and you can do it ahead of time), these are quick and easy.
French Onion Cheese Bread
My notes and small changes are noted in italics
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 3 onions, peeled and thinly sliced
- 2 cloves garlic, chopped
- 3 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves only (I used 1/2 tsp of dried thyme)
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 tablespoon white balsamic vinegar
- 4 French rolls, split in half (I used half of a baguette, split in half and then each piece halved = 4 total pieces)
- 2 cups Gruyère or Fontina cheese, shredded (I used just over 1 c of Gruyere)
- Caramelize the onions: Melt butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add onions, garlic and thyme leaves and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Lower heat to medium low, add the sugar, salt, and pepper; stir and cover and cook for 1 hour (mine took 35 minutes), stirring occasionally. Add balsamic vinegar and cook for another 10 minutes or until onions are caramelized, stirring occasionally.
- Preheat oven to 400°F.
- Place bread halves on a baking sheet, cut side up. Sprinkle evenly with shredded cheese then spoon caramelized onions on top.
- Bake for 10-15 minutes or until cheese has melted and bread turns golden brown.
- Cut into pieces and serve immediately. Garnish with extra thyme leaves if desired