8 brown onions, unpeeled and cut in half
4 cloves garlic, unpeeled OR 6 halved shallots
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves
1 bay leaf
3 potatoes, peeled and cubed
2 tablespoons brandy or Kiddush wine (optional)
5 cups of beef stock (3 Knorr 'Grill' cubes to water)
2 tablespoons smooth Dijon mustard (optional)
Coarse black pepper and Parmesan cheese to serve
1: Place onions and garlic in a baking pan, cut side up, drizzle over olive oil then turn over so they are cut side down and roast at 200 C for 50 minutes or till soft.
2: Remove the garlic and onion from its skin, slice onion flesh and place both onions and garlic in a lightly oiled, large pot.
3: Add the brandy and allow to cook for 2 minutes then add the bay leaf, stock, potatoes, water and mustard (if using) and cook covered for 20 minutes or until soup has thickened slightly and potatoes are soft.
4: Remove the bay leaf and process slightly (optional) then season with black pepper and serve with Parmesan cheese or Parmesan cheese toasts.
COOK'S NOTES: For a more caramelized flavor, toss onions and garlic over low heat for 6 -8 minutes before adding brandy. You can also thicken soup by adding 2 tablespoons flour to roasted onions/garlic & stirring for 3 minutes before adding remaining ingredients