Cut bread into 24 slices; place on baking sheets.
Broil slices 5 1/2 inches from heat 1 minute on each side or until golden brown. Set aside.
Cook onion and sugar in hot oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, 25 minutes. Cool.
Top bread evenly with onion mixture, basil leaves, and pepper strips. Sprinkle evenly with cheese, and broil 1 minute or until cheese melts. Serve immediately.