Cabbage and Salt Pork Soup

This is more or less a rustic soup, but is very delicious. Every district in France has a slightly different version of it, and the one I give hails from Gascony.


  • 1 cabbage
  • 1 lb. of salt pork
  • ½ pint of haricot beans, previously soaked
  • 3 or 4 large potatoes
  • 2 large carrots
  • 1 large turnip
  • 1 or 2 leeks
  • 2 onions
  • 1 clove of garlic (optional)
  • a sprig of thyme, salt and pepper


Blanch the cabbage, and quarter it. Put it in a saucepan with the haricot beans, previously soaked, the potatoes, peeled and halved, the sliced carrots, turnip, leeks, onions, garlic, and cover with cold water. Season highly with salt and pepper. Simmer gently for 1½ hours. Then add the pork, and simmer for another hour, or till the pork is quite tender. Put in each soup plate a slice of bread, previously cooked in a little butter to a golden colour, and pour the purée of vegetables over it. The pork is usually served separately.