Onion Soup a la Secret Serranía

Onion Soup a la Secret Serranía

This hearty soup is ideal for the cold nights we are experiencing at the moment. Paul Whitelock did some research, sourced local ingredients and came up with this version.

Onion Soup a la Secret Serranía

I wanted to create a French-style onion soup using local produce. I found three different coloured local onions – red, white and brown. Garlic, potatoes and carrots came from my “huerta” and purified water came from my well.

Ingredients (serves 4)

3 local onions, 1 red, 1 white and 1 brown

2 cloves of garlic, crushed

15g salted butter, or oil

2 tsps meat bouillon (vegetable will also work)

900 ml fresh water

2 tsps brown sugar

2 medium local potatoes, cubed

1 carrot, sliced

1tbsp of random mixed herbs. I used coriander, parsley and rosemary

Salt and ground black pepper

½ cup of dark Vermouth to deglaze the pan

1 slice per person of toasted pan picado andaluz topped with a grated local hard cheese

To accompany, a doppelbock (8%) from Hijos de Rivera craft brewery in A Coruña, Galicia


Fry the shredded onion in the butter in a deep frying pan, stirring continuously, When the onions start to turn golden add the crushed garlic and mix well. You need to caramelise the onions well – this is very important for the ultimate flavour of the soup.

Meanwhile, in a large pan boil the water, add the bouillon, herbs, sugar, salt and ground pepper. Add the cubed potatoes and sliced carrot. Bring back to the boil.

Continue to fry and caramelise the onions. When this process is complete add to the large pan. De-glaze the frying pan with the Vermouth and add to the large pan.

Simmer on low heat for about an hour.

Then either blend the soup or leave it as it is. I left mine.

Serve with the toasted bread topped with melted cheese.

Enjoy with a strong local craft beer. I only had a craft beer from the North in the house, but it went very well with the soup.

¡Salud y buen provecho!

Paul Whitelock

About Paul Whitelock

Paul Whitelock is a retired former languages teacher, school inspector and translator, who emigrated to the Serranía de Ronda in 2008, where he lives with his second wife, Rita, and his dog, Berti. He spends his time between Montejaque and Ronda doing DIY, gardening and writing.