Time

I can make a proper French onion soup, or onion soup gratinée. Thank you, CIA! The main ingredients are simple—onions and chicken broth. Oh and sherry! The soup’s flavor comes from time. In order to develop the correct flavor, the onions need to cook slowly so they can become caramelized and acquire a deep rich color like espresso. Care needs to be taken so the onions don’t burn.

Gratinée means browned. The brown coloring comes from the onions being scraped on the pot with a wooden spoon for about an hour. Chicken (NOT beef) broth is poured over the onions once they have reached perfection.

Many cooks take a shortcut when making onion soup by using brown beef stock (for the color) instead of chicken stock. Shortcuts can save time. Shortcuts can sometimes make life easier. Shortcuts do not lead to optimal outcomes. 

A professor of mine at the University of Oregon once wrote an article about the tyranny of time. He showed how missed opportunities for students in special education can have a significant outcome on child well being and school success. The earlier we can address a child's needs can make a big difference for the child and his/her family.

The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) has a component called Child Find where it is the lead agency's responsibility to locate children eligible for services in a timely manner. No shortcuts, please. Early identification of a delay or disability is of paramount importance in the lives of little ones. Time matters in childhood. 

 Macy making  onion soup gratinée at the Culinary Institute of America (CIA)

Macy making onion soup gratinée at the Culinary Institute of America (CIA)