- For the croutons:
- 1 T olive oil
- 1-2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1 baguette, cut into 2.5 cm slices
- For the soup:
- 2 T olive oil
- 50 g butter
- 700 g onions, thinly sliced
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1/2 t sugar
- 1.2 litres good-quality beef stock
- 315 ml dry white wine
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 2 T Cognac
- 225 g goat's cheese (crottin or Rocamadour), sliced
To make the croutons, preheat the oven to 180°C.
Drizzle the olive oil onto a large baking sheet. Add the garlic and, using your hands, spread the oil and garlic all over the baking sheet. Place the bread slices on top of the oil, then turn each one so that both sides have been lightly coated with the oil. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until crispy and crunchy. Remove from the oven and set aside.
To make the soup, melt the olive oil and butter together in a saucepan over a high heat. When very hot, add the onion, garlic and sugar. Cook, stirring from time to time, until the edges of the onions have turned dark – about 6 minutes.
Reduce the heat to its lowest setting and cook the onions very slowly for 30 minutes. The base of the pan should be covered with a rich, nut-brown, caramelised film.
Pour in the stock and white wine, season, then stir, scraping the base of the pan well.
Increase the heat and bring to a simmer, then reduce the heat to its lowest setting again, and cook gently, uncovered, for 1 hour.
When you're ready to serve the soup, bring it back up to simmering point, taste to check the seasoning, then add the Cognac.
Warm the soup bowls in a low oven and preheat the grill to its highest setting. Ladle the hot soup into the bowls and top with the croutons, allowing them to float on the top of the soup. Sprinkle the goat’s cheese thickly over the croutons and place the whole lot under the grill until the cheese is golden brown and bubbling.