aka Cleaning out My Fridge... (French Fridays with Dorie: Garbure from the Supermarket)

So, this week, French Fridays with Dorie sent us down the path of "Garbure" making.

My first reaction was "what the what?"

Going into this, I had no clue what a "garbure" was, but Wikipedia told me that it is a thick French soup or stew with ham and cabbage or other vegetables.

Okay then, garbure it is.

Until I started reading the ingredient list and realized that this is really a "cleaning out the vegetable bin" soup.

Onion? Check.
Leeks, shallots, garlic? Check, check, check.
Celery & carrots? You betcha - they were all hiding out in the bin.
A couple of turnips and some potatoes? It's in there...
A partial head of cabbage? Ding, ding, ding, we have a winner.
A can of beans in the pantry! Not totally following the directions, but it worked!

Ham hock in the freezer? Surprisingly, yes. (For some reason, I had it in my head that this recipe was going to need ham hocks, so I had stashed a few in the freezer. Yes, I am crazy like that...)
Now, lest anyone think that I followed the directions (I can't have anyone thinking that), there was some trickery cookery going on. After reading the P's & Q's, I decided that I didn't want to end up with mushy vegetables. So, instead of cooking the vegetables forever and ever in the stock, I cooked the ham hock separately in a pot of water to form a stock/ broth and then sautéed the vegetables(except for the cabbage) in my soup pot. Once they had been sautéed, I added the stock/ broth to the pot with the vegetables and simmered the sausage (I used a smoked Cajun sausage, because that was what in my freezer), cabbage and beans until cooked through.

Eighty seven vegetables and one empty refrigerator bin later, soup was on and I came to the realization that I had just made a very large quantity of sausage and cabbage soup. Not an ideal situation in my world, but one does what one must do, right?

At the end of the day, the soup went over better with the male soup eaters than the female soup eaters (I have a feeling that the spicy sausage contributed to that outcome) and the amount of leftovers sitting in the refrigerator is far less than I thought it would be. That's a win, right???

Peace out. XOXO

This post participates in French Fridays with Dorie. A link to every one's posted Garbure results can be found here.


  1. Wow and you NEARLY followed the directions this week too!

  2. It certainly was meaty! Sorry to hear that you didn't love it. But I bet you loved the feeling of cleaning out your crisper.

  3. Definitely a win. I used canned beans, too...but had used up my ham hocks for split pea soup earlier this winter. You have a WELL stocked kitchen!

  4. I only bought the sausage. Everything else was in the fridge. What does that say about us? Hoarders? Resourceful? I'm not sure... Glad you enjoyed this. I did too. Lots of leftovers in the freezer, so I'm not sure it was a net clean out... Hope it's warmer that -7 by now.

  5. Sorry you weren’t crazy about this one, but at least you pleased the male soup eaters. It was a winner in my house…my hubby and I both loved it! Happy weekend, Cher!

  6. Of course that's a win. Anytime you put together, make, and post a recipe, it's a win. (In my book.) In one of my first French cooking classes more than 30 years ago (Egad, that's frightening), I made a classic garbure. All vegetables, of course. I have always loved that soup but adding the meat made it even better, I think. Once and Iowa girl, always an Iowa girl with that meat thing. I also used beans from a can because I had them in the cupboard. In fact, I doubled the amount and used TWO cans of beans. No one struck me dead so I think it's okay. Like Joe, I liked the spice sausage.

  7. It does look warming and delicious, though the name is kind of weird :P

    Choc Chip Uru

  8. Looks wonderful and enjoyed your post!

  9. No leftovers here after just a couple of meals. So good. Good idea on the veggies. I never think to read the Ps and Qs. But my veggies weren't too soft.

  10. I thought about using canned beans but decided to follow the recipe for
    a change. I remember years back cooking chick peas after soaking them
    over night and they were tough as anything. I really liked Dorie's method
    of boiling them and letting them stand awhile. Of course, cooking in
    chicken broth and all the veggies for three hours helped a lot too.
    We really enjoyed this especially on such a cold day.

  11. I love a recipe that uses up stuff in the fridge.. thought I seems to have bought a lot for this one? Glad yours was a thrifty success.

  12. I felt pretty much the same as you. Its pretty good but I make ham and bean soups often that are just as good and easier to put together...ie, less chopping. It is good to clean out the fridge periodically though! Hope you are not freezing Cher!

  13. Yes, spicy sausage- like bacon- makes everything better. Esp for the male taste testers. Can't believe you had all this stuff on hand. Even my grocery store kept having to send the guy in produce into the back to get stuff as I read off the list (note to file....shop earlier in the day like a normal person....). I did love how comforting this this soup/stew was for the ridiculous winter we are experiencing. It is snowing AGAIN as I write this...

  14. Wow, I'm impressed you were able to make this without a trip to the store. I love recipes that use up things I happen to have on hand. Sorry this wasn't a favorite for you.

  15. Your freezer sounds as magic as Betsy's.

    One advantage of skipping this week's recipe is that I'll have everyone's posts to refer to when I do get 'round to it. I think I might follow some of your suggestions, as I'm not a mushy veg fan. (Well, who is?) This is the sort of hearty stew I love, so I don't know if I'll wait too long to try it.

  16. Ha ha - had I remembered the beans I was going to use cannec ones too. I bought s ham hock and was surprised at how cheap it was. Great dish wasn't it,

  17. Anything that helps clean out the fridge is a win!


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