You can skip the poached eggs and leave this Spanish soup lean (known as sopa de ajo), which makes it almost a tonic, but there is something about the egg yolks melting into the broth that makes the whole concoction especially satisfying. This version contains a lot of fresh marjoram, but a more traditional version would be made with thyme. A Mexican version could be made with oregano.
– 4 heads garlic.
– 1 bunch marjoram or thyme (about 30 sprigs).
– 2 quarts chicken broth.
– 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice.
– One 1-inch strip orange zest (optional).
– 6 slices slightly stale French bread, toasted.
– 6 poached eggs, optional.
– Extra virgin olive oil, for serving (optional).
Step 1:Break up the garlic heads into cloves and put the unpeeled cloves in a pot with the marjoram and the broth. Bring to a gentle simmer, cover, and simmer for about 45 minutes, or until the garlic is soft.
Step 2:Work the soup through a food mill or through a strainer, pressing against the solids with the bottom of a ladle. Return the soup to the pot, bring to a simmer, and add the lemon juice and orange zest. Season with salt and pepper. Put a toast in each soup plate, top each toast with an egg, and ladle over the broth. Drizzle with the olive oil.