Garbure with Bayonne Ham

*thick Basque soup made with ham and cabbage


  • One Bayonne Ham shank
  • Five to eight potatoes
  • One green cabbage, four onions
  • Seasonal vegetables: carrots, turnips, pumpkin, as available
  • 250g Béarn beans
  • Thyme, a clove, bay leaf, marjoram, three cloves of garlic
  • Salt, freshly ground pepper or Espelette pepper

Put the Bayonne Ham shank to cook in four to six litres of water with no added salt, for one or two hours on a slow boil.
Cut the cabbage into four and blanch it separately.
If the beans are dried, soak them for a few hours.
Cut the onions into slices and brown them, ideally with a little grease from a jar of confit de porc (potted pigmeat) if available, otherwise use lard.
Peel and cut the carrots into round slices, and brown them with the onions.
Add the onions, carrots, beans and two cloves of garlic to the Bayonne Ham shank. Adjust the seasoning if necessary.Leave it to cook for a further two hours, skimming off any froth that rises to the surface.
Then add the potatoes and the blanched cabbage. Cover and leave to simmer gently for one and a half hours. Adjust the seasoning again if necessary.