Sweet Onion & Cider Soup

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It seems like winter is going on forever in the UK–we’ve had snow in April, and only a few days of sunshine dotted about. Consequently, cravings for stodgy broths and soups that demand time spent warming up over the stove haven’t died down at all! Here’s a recipe for one my favourite cheap and simple soups–it should feed two as a main or four as a starter.

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What you’ll need:
4 onions,
olive oil
600ml stock,
150ml cider,
1 tbsp cider vinegar,
2 tsp dark brown sugar,
1 tbsp plain flour,
2 bay leaves,
stale/defrosted bread.
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Method:
1. Chop up the onions into thin slices, whilst heating a dollop of the oil in a big pan (the more the merrier, but you can decide how much oil you use depending on how healthy you want it to be!).
2. Once the oil is hot, add the onions and caramelize over a low heat for an hour, stirring regularly (whist this is happening you can catch up on some chores: do all the washing up, take out the recycling, sweep the kitchen floor and reset the oven clock–if you’re as disorganised as me!)
3. After an hour, add 2 tsp of dark brown sugar to give the onions a little push in the right (sweet) direction. Continue to caramelize for another half hour.

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4. When you’ve been caramelizing for 90 minutes, add 1 tbsp plain flour to thicken the mixture up.
5. Then add the cider, stock, bay leaves and cider vinegar. Let simmer for 20 minutes.
6. During this 20 minutes you can make your croutons: cut squares of stale bread and lightly toss in a pan with a splash of oil, until coated and toasted.

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7. Serve up, making sure you remember to take out the bay leaves!
8. Top the soup with the croutons and enjoy!

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