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Soupe a l’Oignon Gratinee

February 7, 2010

There are always those days when a trip to the supermarket is just not going to happen.  But when you have onions, you have inspiration.  What a simple way to make a fabulous dinner.  Add a salad, some caramelized apples with raisins and walnuts, topped with vanilla ice cream and the guests will think you actually planned this spectacular dinner.

Soupe a l’Oignon Gratinee


  • 3 T. Butter
  • 5-6 Medium Onions, halved and thinly sliced
  • 1/2 t. Salt
  • 1/4 t. freshly ground Pepper
  • 2 T. All-Purpose Flour
  • 9 C. Beef Stock (homemade, canned or water)
  • 1 1/2 t. Cognac
  • 1/2 lb. Swiss Cheese (Gruyere or Emmentaler (grated, about 2 cups)
  • French Bread (stale or toasted)


  1. In a large saucepan heat the butter.  Add the onions and cook over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until well browned (approx. 10-12 minutes).  After another 20-25 minutes the onions should be dark brown (not black).  Season with salt and pepper.
  2. Reduce the heat to medium and stir in the flour.  Brown lightly, about 3 minutes while you continue to stir.
  3. Add the stock, increase the heat to high and bring to a boil (about 15 minutes).  Reduce the heat to medium and simmer for 30 minutes.  Skim off any foam or butter that comes to the surface.  (Recipe can be prepared ahead to this point.  Let cool to room temperature, cover and refrigerate.  Bring to a simmer before proceeding.)
  4. Preheat the broiler.
  5. Heat the soup to a simmer.
  6. Place enough bread in each of 6 oven-proof bowls so the slices will cover the surface once the bowls are filled with the soup.  Ladle the soup into the bowls.
  7. Add 1/4 t. cognac in each bowl.
  8. Sprinkle the soup with the cheese and place the bowls on a cookie sheet and put under the broiler until the cheese has browned (5-7 minutes).

Serves 6

Recipe adapted from “At Home With the French Classics” by Richard Grausman

Special “THANKS” to Chef Gui Alinot when he clarified a preparation question I had.  You can find him at

Caesar Salad


  • Romaine Lettuce (washed and dried)
  • 2 Garlic Cloves (finely chopped)
  • 2-3 Pieces of Bacon (cooked and chopped)
  • 1/2 C.  Olive Oil
  • Juice of 1 Lemon
  • Salt and Pepper (as desired)
  • 8-10 drops of Worcestershire Sauce
  • Anchovies (4-8 Fillets)
  • 1/2 C. Parmesan Cheese (grated)
  • 3-4 T. Red Wine Vinegar
  • Croutons


  1. Put all the ingredients (except Anchovies, Lettuce and Parmesan Cheese) in a bowl and whisk.
  2. Put Romaine (broken up) into a large bowl.
  3. If using anchovies, mash and add to dressing.
  4. Pour over the Romaine and toss.
  5. Sprinkle the Parmesan Cheese and Bacon on the top.
  6. Add the Croutons.

(Recipe Courtesy of a friend in South Miami)

Caramelized Apples with Raisins and Walnuts


  • 2 T. Butter
  • 2 T. Brown Sugar
  • 2 Apples (peeled and cored)
  • 1/2 C. Golden Raisins
  • 1/2 C.  Walnuts (chopped)
  • 1/4 t. cinnamon
  • 1/8 t. nutmeg
  • 1/8 t. grated lemon
  • Vanilla Ice Cream


  1. Melt butter in sauce pan.
  2. Add brown sugar, apples and raisins, heat thoroughly.
  3. Add cinnamon, nutmeg and lemon.
  4. Add walnuts and heat 2-3 more minutes.
  5. Spoon apple mixture into bowls.
  6. Top with Vanilla Ice Cream.
9 Comments leave one →
  1. Weezie Jefferson permalink
    January 15, 2012 18:56

    What if you don’t drink alcohol? Can you substitute the cognac with something else?

    • January 15, 2012 19:24

      Thank you for visiting, this soup is wonderful. You can just omit the cognac, however most of the alcohol is cooked out. I hope you enjoy.

  2. February 9, 2010 15:07

    great recipe and will be making this

  3. February 8, 2010 08:36

    This sounds delicious. I went yesterday to buy some Cognac for a recipe but ended up getting brandy. It was the cost factor!
    Then I was kicking myself because I didnt splurge on the real deal. If I had this recipe, I would have splurged for sure. Next time! I’ll bookmark this one for sure. And I love Gruyere.
    I have a suggestion for you. Can you move that Subscribe button to the top. You want people to see that first, not last!


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