Refreshing-beverage-sold-separately courtesy of Amanda Tien

Join Matt Powell in this week’s Cooking with Bwog to learn the not-so-secret recipe for that scrumptious soup you always get at Le Monde.

With its rich broth, soft white bread, and gooey strands of Gruyere, French Onion Soup is a dish that is always sure to please. Presenting the finished soup to your guests, you’ll be lauded as Julia Child herself. Surely something this sumptuous can’t be easy to make?
But that’s where the secret lies. With just a couple common ingredients and a bit of time, you’ll have your friends at your feet, begging for more.

French Onion Soup

Serves 4


  • 2 tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 1 ½ lb. (about 6 onions) yellow onions, thinly sliced
  • Pinch of sugar
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 C dry white wine
  • ½ C cognac
  • 4 C beef stock
  • 1 large sprig of thyme
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 4 thick slices of baguette
  • 1 ½ C shredded Gruyere


  1. In a large saucepan, melt the butter over medium-low heat. Add the onions, sugar, salt, and pepper. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until onions are soft and lightly caramelized, 30 minutes.
  2. Add the wine and cognac. Raise the heat to high and cook until the liquid is reduced by half. Add stock, thyme, garlic, and bay leaves. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook the soup until flavors have melded, 30-45 minutes.
  3. Taste, and if necessary add water if the soup is too strong.
  4. Preheat the oven to 400. Toast the bread slices, 3-5 minutes.
  5. Remove thyme sprig, garlic, and bay leaves from the soup. Ladle the soup into 4 ramekins, or oven-proof bowls. Top with a slice of bread and a generous amount of cheese. Place the ramekins on a metal baking sheet and bake in the oven until cheese is melted, 10-15 minutes. Serve immediately.