When asked to name a typically French food, it seems that people will immediately mention croissants, baguettes, and the unique escargot. However, in addition to these foods, France also has a variety of soups that are no less delicious than the three foods.
Soup in Indonesia seems to be different from how to serve it like in western countries. In France, soup usually falls into the category of appetizers that aim to enhance the taste buds. Do you know the names of typical French soups? If you’re curious, check out the full info in this article.
- Soupe de poisson la rouille
Originally a soup consumed by the underprivileged, this French specialty called soupe de Poisson la rouille is a classic French soup and closely related to the famous bouillabaisse.
Usually, a typical soup is served with white fish cooked in a flavorful broth. Some of the broth contains tomatoes, garlic, olive oil, turmeric, and various spices. Then the soup is strained and served with rouille, a classic Provençal sauce.
Generally, this Provençal sauce consists of bread, garlic, egg yolk, spices, and olive oil, while some versions may also include monkfish liver, potatoes, or tomatoes.
Soupe de poisson is a typical French soup from the Provençal region. It is very likely that this soup originated in Marseille, and can be found along the French Mediterranean Coast.
This soup is often enjoyed as an appetizer. Usually, this French soup is served hot and topped with crunchy croutons and Gruyère cheese.
Another typical French soup is a pureed soup that is thick, creamy, and rich in flavor. The ingredients used include cream, cognac or wine, seafood, and a combination of spices. The origin of the name is still a matter of debate.
The first time bisque was mentioned as a clam soup in the 17th century, leading food historians to argue that the soup was originally a fisherman’s dish made to get the most flavor out of whatever ingredients were available.
Today, the most popular version of this typical French soup is lobster bisque, which is made with a long cooking process that is meant to give the dish as much flavor as possible.
Bouillabaisse is a Provençal fish soup that originates from the port city of Marseille. The name of this typical French soup comes from the Provençal Occitan word bolhabaissa which consists of two verbs, namely bolhir (to boil) and abaissar (to reduce heat, namely to cook on low heat).
At first, bouillabaisse is a stew made by Marseille fishermen. The ingredients used are bony reef fish which they cannot sell to restaurants or markets.
There are at least three types of fish in a traditional bouillabaisse, usually the red snapper (Scorpaena scrofa); sea robin; and European conger eels. It can also include barramundi, turbot, monkfish, mullet, or European hake.
Other ingredients can also be shellfish and other seafood such as sea urchins, velvet crab, clams, spider crab, or octopus. More expensive versions may use langoustine (Norwegian lobster) although this is not part of the traditional dish made by Marseille fishermen.
Vegetables such as scallions, tomatoes, onions, potatoes, and celery are boiled together with broth and served with fish. The broth is usually served with rouille, a mayonnaise made of olive oil, turmeric, garlic, and cayenne pepper on a slice of toast.
Garbure is a thick French soup traditionally made with cabbage and confit d’oie? Usually, the modern version is made with added cheese, ham, and hard bread.
The name garbure, which is eaten with a fork, refers to the use of a pitchfork to combine grain. This soup originates from Gascony in southwestern France and is similar to potée.
Garbure is the daily dish of the Gascon peasants? These meals differ from house to house and vary according to the rhythm of the season, the cook, and the income of each household.
The principle of this dish is to boil a variety of vegetables and meats, usually meats that are preserved personally. For vegetables, such as cabbage, you can add green beans, fresh or dried, mangetout peas, radishes, potatoes, peas, carrots, and others.
Often a large bowl of garbure is served to the table in a restaurant that serves Béarn regional specialties, and guests can take as much as they want at the start of the meal using the spoon provided.
- Soupe l’oignon
Soupe l’oignon or French onion soup is made from sweet caramelized onions, beef stock, and spices. Soups are usually topped with a slice of toast and a pile of cheese, which are then grilled to perfection. So with every spoonful, one gets a slice of bread drenched in a flavorful broth, melted cheese, and savory sweet onions. It is very important to caramelize the onions properly when making this French onion soup.
The deep flavor of the caramelized onions is what gives this soup its distinctive taste. If you take a shortcut with this step it will show in the color and taste of the soup.
Caramelizing onions, especially large amounts of onions, is a slow and time-consuming process, about an hour or so. If you stop too soon, the soup will lose its taste. If you do it too quickly, you run the risk of scorching the onions.
This thick, typical French soup is made with onions, scallions, cream, potatoes, and mashed chicken stock. There is debate about its origin. Some say this soup originated in France, while others claim that it was an American invention.
According to a group of food historians, the soup was invented by a French chef named Jules Gouffe in 1859. Others believe that the original creator of this soup was Louis Diat, a French chef at the New York Ritz-Carlton.
Inspired by his childhood potato and leek soup, Louis named the crème soup Vichyssoise glacée after his hometown of Vichy. These days, soup is usually served cold and is often garnished with freshly chopped scallions.
This garlic soup from southwest France is made from large amounts of garlic, onions, roux, and stock or water. Often egg whites and egg yolks are added to Turin to thicken it.
Not only delicious but garlic is also believed to have important health benefits. That’s why this soup dish is getting more and more popular lately. Every February there is a competition event in the town of Villeréal in the Lot-et-Garonne area.
The event celebrates the expertise of local chefs in serving this flavorful French soup. It is a tradition in southern France to serve soup to newlyweds.
- Soup aux choux
This is a classic French version of cabbage soup. Fresh cabbage is boiled, sliced , and cooked with smoked pork belly and chicken stock. The thick chunks of cabbage and smoked pork belly give the cabbage soup character.
Water can be used instead of broth to make this cabbage soup. However, it is important to note that the intensity of the taste will decrease. It is recommended to use homemade chicken stock for a really warm taste.
The soup au choux is one of the most iconic French soups ever and comes back when cabbage is in season and it’s getting colder outside. Also of note, “la Soupe au choux” is an equally famous French comedy that made the soup even more popular throughout France.
- Potage Saint Germain
Potage Saint Germain is a classic French soup that uses pure green peas or split peas as its base. This soup is cooked with carrots, pork belly, onions, and scallions, a simple ingredient that can still impress.
This French dish is a classic of the French culinary school named after the Count of Saint Germain, a minister of war under Louis XIV, who loved fresh, split peas. He always asked for the soup to be made with this ingredient.
Over time, this soup made from peas came to bear his name. In today’s culinary world the term “À la Saint-Germain” refers to recipes made with pea puree and other garnishes made with peas.
- Soupe au pistou
The name of this typical French soup is borrowed from the traditional French pasta, namely soupe au pistou. This is a popular soup similar to Italian minestrone. This soup is made from fresh, seasonal ingredients.
The ingredients are various vegetables such as carrots, potatoes, pumpkin, beans, chickpeas, peas, or other available vegetables. Usually, pasta is added to add texture to the soup.
However, the main ingredient is pistou, a traditional French pasta made from basil, garlic, and olive oil, with the occasional addition of cheese or grated tomatoes. Pasta can be mixed entirely into a soup pot, but it can also be placed in individual bowls.
Soup is indeed a food that seems to always exist in every country, including in France. The row of typical French soups above can be a reference for those of you who are interested in making soup other than the chicken soup you usually make.
The ingredients are also easy to get so you won’t have a problem if you want to try to make it. So, which French soup would you make?