Onion Soup with Raisins and Madeira

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 pounds sweet yellow onions, peeled and sliced very thin
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced or pureed
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 2 tablespoons golden raisins
  • 1/4 cup dry Madeira
  • 5 cups rich chicken or beef stock
  • 4 slices hearty country bread, toasted and brushed with 2 teaspoons olive oil.
  • Heat butter and oil over medium low heat in large kettle. Add onions, salt, sugar and pepper and stir well. Cook very gently 30-40 minutes until limp and well caramelized. Add the garlic, cloves, paprika and raisins and cook one minute until their aromas are released. Add Madeira and simmer until reduced by half. Add stock, bring to the boil, then lower heat and simmer covered one hour, then simmer uncovered 30 minutes more. Place one crouton in the bottom of each serving bowl and ladle soup over.

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