What is this traditional French dish?

<Photo of a popular French dish, served in Thones, French Alps>
Pictured is a traditional French dish, served last weekend at a refuge in Thônes. The refuge was far nicer than the one I went to a few weeks ago, but more on that in another entry.

Right now, I want to talk about this photo. This plate of, well, let’s call it meat, is loved in various parts of France. Do you have any idea what’s in there? There are all sorts of recipes flying around for this dish. Many stink, and some seem to think that the stinkier the better. I know French people who love it and hate it. This particular French person, Julia, obviously loves this dish and was really impressed with this particular version.

So what is it?

Some of my friends called it ‘the poo sausage’. It’s an andouillette sausage. The sausage exterior is made from the small intestine of a pig, then filled with a variety of ingredients, depending who’s making it, often including intestines, onions, wine and seasoning. So why ‘the poo sausage’? This sausage sometimes smells like poo, which isn’t that surprising, given its origins.

Its times like these that I’m glad I’m a vegetarian.

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I’m a technical author, journalist and writer from Australia who has been living in Europe since 2000 and exploring the world from there. My passions are writing, snow sports and travel.

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11 comments on “What is this traditional French dish?
  1. Michelle says:

    Oh I hate Andouille, and mainly for it’s smell! I nearly made my husband sit at another table in a restaurant when he ordered it once. It stank! Must have been a good one! I’m not a vegetarian but you have to be a real carnivore to even consider eating this one!

  2. Julia the Andouillette Eater says:

    I protest! It smells baaaaad ONLY if you eat a bad quality one (ex: the cheap ones that are usually served in highway restaurants). That one did have a strong smell but not a poo smell!!! By the way, what about cauliflower smelling of fart when you cook it?… Anyway, that was a fantastic night to remember!

  3. Wendy says:

    Julia, of course you’re right: cauliflower smells terrible, and we all know what happens after you eat asparagus, but it just looks so…lumpy!

    Michelle, I sat at the other end of the table from Julia so I can’t confirm that the sausage did not smell. I was happy that I couldn’t smell it from where I was sitting either way.

  4. Lesley says:

    This dish in the only downside of eating in a resto and having The Menu.
    I will eat haggis but I fear that we might get IT as one of the many courses at the Chasse Repas in a couple of weeks time!

  5. Wendy says:

    You never know, Lesley, you might end up with one of the *good* ones that Julia speaks of, if you do end up being served andouillette.

  6. Steph says:

    I think I would have to be starving to be able to eat that! There are definitely too many dubious looking bits of animal in there (and probably horse!).

  7. Lesley says:

    Not to mention llama Steph.

  8. Yeah, I eat a lot of weird stuff but andouillette does not work for me. *shiver* However, I must say, the one in the photo is the prettiest one I’ve ever seen.

  9. Phoebe says:

    Andouillette is banned in my house with French husband who loves it. The smell makes me heave. I’m an adventurous eater and have tried many peculiar things around the world but I draw the line at “poo sausage”!

  10. Mandy says:

    Oh no, that is grim. But it looks so good! I guess they have to draw people in to eating it somehow.

  11. Wendy says:

    I’m sadly getting used to the smell of boudin blanc (white sausage), which seems pretty popular amongst my friends. I’ve no idea what’s in it, but the smell was plain offensive at first. I’m still glad I’m a vegie. 🙂

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About me

Wendy Hollands writer in Annecy, France

I'm an experienced technical writer based in the French Alps. I enjoy learning French language nuances, winter sports and travel. Drop by wendyhollands.com, my other site.

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