Soupe à l'oignon pour digérer (Onion soup for the digestion)

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Indy Lifestyle Online

Mark Hix says: Ripailles – which is French for "feasts" – is a fabulous hefty book by Stéphane Reynaud (published by Murdoch Books, £25) that gets right into the heart of real French cooking with lovely dishes and recipes that you would expect to find in a good country home in France. It's illustrated with interesting, non-cheffy photography and lovely quirky drawings.

This is currently at the top of my pile of French cookery books.

8 brown onions
2 glasses white wine
6 slices of baguette
Grated gruyère cheese
Olive oil
Salt and pepper

Slice the onions thinly and then sauté them in the olive oil until they brown. Add the white wine, reduce by a third, then add 2 litres of water.

Allow to cook for 20 minutes (the onions must be meltingly tender and the soup must be a nice brown colour) and season.

To serve, cover the baguette toasts with grated cheese, place on top of the soup and place under the grill to gratinate the dish.