Bonjour, you

I’m Margaux Vialleron: welcome to The Onion Papers, storytelling in the kitchen. TOPs are agglomerations and digressions from things I cook, eat, read and observe—a celebration of forms and imagination, flexing language—a recipe book and almanac in drafting. A writer who cooks’ notebook?

I’m the author of two novels: Breaststrokes (May 2024) and The Yellow Kitchen (July 2022). My short story, Fernanda’s Fish Soup, was runner-up in the 2022 Harper’s Bazaar short story competition.

Here is what you can expect from The Onion Papers:

paid subscribers:

TOP Kneading Club: annotated recipes and wanders, sent on Mondays. Topics include reading, writing, foraging and how bodies and the land are connected.

TOP Peels: grateful round-ups, sent on the first Monday of each month.

TOP Stories: dispatched to all subscribers every other Thursday. Topics and forms vary with my mood and the seasons. 

TOP Pantry: an index of all the Onion Papers recipes, recommendation lists, and the occasion to think and cook together.

free subscribers:

TOP Stories: dispatched to all subscribers every other Thursday. Topics and forms vary with my mood and the seasons. 

My interests include memory and archives, bodies, food and seasonality, as well as language and culture. Some good examples of what you can expect from this newsletter include Cucina Pantesca, My Mother's Tongue, Three Tokens of Time, and In Praise of Eating in Bed. I also like to write about places such as the woods and foraging, Vendée, Paris or Livorno.

You can find me on Twitter and on Instagram at @margauxvlln. You can also browse all the books I mention in the newsletter on my page.

Will you let me know what you’re cooking, or not cooking?

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Some nice things people said about my novels:

About Breaststrokes:

'Vialleron’s writing is laced with a love for these women who can barely love themselves. A novel for anyone interested in the way the body keeps score or in the complex intimacies between women’ — Rowan Hisayo Buchanan

‘Timely, structurally inventive, with delicious prose' — Pip Finkemeyer

‘Reading Breaststrokes felt a little like watching ribbons unfurl – or intertwine. Margaux Vialleron writes tenderly and evocatively about female friendship, fear and desire’ — Chloë Ashby

pre-order Breaststrokes

About The Yellow Kitchen:

‘Stylishly written, this witty portrayal of the appetites and private passions of a young group of friends is a moreish and utterly satisfying feast.’ — Caroline Eden

‘A heady mix of politics, friendship, sex and food, poignant, provocative and utterly distinctive’ — Paula Hawkins 

‘An exquisite novel — beautifully rendered, powerfully told, and so deeply felt. I urge you to read this novel — you will never forget it’ — Lucia Osborne-Crowley

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storytelling in the kitchen; annotated recipes are sent on Mondays, long-form essays are dispatched every other Thursday


writer, drafting in kitchens. author of Breaststrokes: a novel (May 2024), The Yellow Kitchen: a novel (2022), short stories and The Onion Papers newsletter.