I used to make french onion soup in Karachi quite often because I could get all the ingredients fairly easily and Kumy loved it. I used the only cheese available back then – “Greens”- which came in a wax cover. These days I use Gruyere.
3 onions, sliced very thin
1/4 cup butter
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 Tbsp flour
1/2 tsp brown sugar
5-6 cups water
2 Tbsp white wine
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
French bread, cut into 1/2″ thick slices
Gruyere Cheese, cut into nice slices
Saute onions in oil and butter, until completely translucent and the onions are starting to brown. Add the flour and sugar and cook until the flour is starting to darken. This can happen fairly quickly so don’t let it burn.
Add water, wine, salt and pepper and cook 20 minutes, stirring to get up all the brown bits from the pan. Cook longer if you want to reduce the broth a bit.
Melt some more butter in a frying pan and fry the bread slices in it for a little bit.
Ladle soup into oven-proof bowls, and place the bread on top. Add just a bit more broth on top of the bread, then add cheese. Heat under a broiler until the cheese melts and starts to brown a little bit.