6 medium brown onions
50 g butter chopped
1 tblsp vegetable oil
4 cloves garlic crushed
1 tsp sea salt
1 tblsp sugar
1 cup red wine
1.5 litres beef stock
2 dried bay leaves
cracked black pepper to taste
½ bunch fresh thyme leaves to garnish
50 g butter softened
1 small breadstick cut into 2cm-thick slices
1.5 cups grated gruyere cheese
- Peel onions. Cut into ½cm-thick rings. Heat butter and oil in a large saucepan over a medium to high heat. Add onions, garlic and salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 20 to 25 minutes, or until onions are soft and golden.
- Add sugar. Cook, stirring, for a further 7 minutes, or until caramelised.
- Add wine. Bring to boil. Boil for 5 minutes. Add stock and bay leaves. Season with pepper. Return to boil. Simmer on low for 20 minutes. Remove bay leaves.
- To make croutons, butter bread on both sides. Arrange bread slices on an oven tray.
- Cook in a moderate oven (180C) for 20 minutes, turning over halfway through. Sprinkle with cheese. Cook for a further 10 minutes, or until golden and crisp.
- Just before serving, top soup with croutons. Garnish bowls with fresh thyme sprigs.