This soup is a type of panade, a French soup in which bread is used to thicken the broth. This soup can be made with any member of the onion and garlic family, singly or in combination. You can forgo the milk if you like and use all broth.
2 c cubed bread, crusts removed
2 c milk, or broth
2 T butter or oil
1 1/2 – 2 c chopped onions
2 c broth
salt and pepper, to taste
(fresh) grated nutmeg, to taste
extra milk (or half-and-half, or cream,) or broth, if necessary
Parmesan or other grated cheese; or yogurt or sour cream, for serving
1. Combine the cubed bread and milk and set aside to soak.
2. In a soup pot, melt butter or heat oil. Add onion and sauté for about 10 minutes, until the onions are turning golden. Do not allow to brown, turn down the heat some if this is occurring. Add the broth and bring to a simmer. Simmer, covered, for about 10 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, break the bread down with a utensil or your hands into smaller pieces. When the broth has simmered for 10 minutes, add the bread and milk to the soup pot. Stir or whisk the mixture while bringing it back to a simmer. You want to try and break the bread down even more. Simmer, covered, for another 10 to 15 minutes, until most of the bread has dissolved and the soup has thickened.
4. Season to taste with salt, pepper, and some nutmeg. If the mixture is too thick add some extra milk or broth. Half-and-half or cream will thin the soup and also add richness. If adding extra liquid, allow to heat through.
5. Serve, with Parmesan or other cheese sprinkled on top, or a dollop of yogurt or sour cream, or some of each.