"You really only eat cabbage soup?"

Translation:Tu ne manges vraiment que de la soupe au chou ?

July 4, 2020

This discussion is locked.


Since cabbage is the main component of the soup, should it be soupe de chou rather than au chou?


I did a Google search for soupe de chou, and I got recipe results for soupe au(x) chou(x).

My guess is that you have to remember soupe à/au/à la/aux just like you'd remeber pain au (e.g., chocolat), café au (e.g. lait), confiture de (e.g. fraises), etc.


I think so and I thought it before reading the French translation (and I'm French).


Somehow that makes me feel a lot better! Other than memorising each flavour (as in the description of the item) and whether it has de or à+ (au, etc), is there any way of guessing or even knowing which is which? And if we get it wrong in a French restaurant (in France or another francophone country), would anyone mind?

[deactivated user]

    I think most recipes have ingredients in addition to cabbage (e.g., ham, carrots) so presumably that's why it's au chou. Most recipes seem to use that form. It seems a bit random though. Tomato soup is pretty well just tomatoes but googling it, you get recipes for soupe de tomate, soupe de tomates, soupe a la tomate, and soupe aux tomates.


    I said "de soupe" instead of "de la" because I thought it was a negative construction and therefore no definite article needed. Marked wrong, but can anyone tell me why? Just when I think I get it, Duo throws me a curve!


    From Sitesurf's T&Ns:

    The adverb ne is a limitation but not a negation when combined with the conjunction que. Instead ne… que means “only”, as an alternative to seulement. Since it is not negative, an indefinite or partitive article is not altered in front of the direct object.

    Je n’ai que des tomates pour la sauce. — I only have tomates for the sauce.


    I got stuck on this as well! I'm not sure why it's wrong. Hopefully someone can enlighten us!


    Why "vraiment" before "que" and after "mange"? Why is the word order like as above structure?


    "Ne … que" is restrictive, not a full blown negative. The "que" particle can be used to restrict the verb and would then follow the normal placement rules.

    But more usually it is used to restrict a noun (as it is here) or other type of phrase and it is then placed preceding the object that it restricts. Frequently (but not always) that will place it, by coincidence, following the verb.

    However, here it is supplanted by the adverb "vraiment", which is placed following the conjugated verb as normal.


    Tu ne manges que de la soupe au chou vraiment? Does the placement of vraiment change the meaning of the sentence?


    I don't think we have seen or learned anything up to now that would distinguish between "soupe au chou" and "soupe de chou."


    A soup made only of cabbage would be a puree, not a soup.

    Cabbage is the defining ingredient in cabbage soup, not an exclusive ingredient like a jam or sauce de tomate. A cabbage coulis would be "un coulis de chou" even though it might contain minor ingredients such as seasoning.


    Not sure how other english speakers translate this construction, but in my head i sub the 'que' as the English construction 'but'. It doesnt make perfect sense but at least my mind doesnt fart out and i stop comprehending the rest of the sentence.

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