pomme savonnette

Discussion in 'French-English Vocabulary / Vocabulaire Français-Anglais' started by maya33, Jun 10, 2015.

  1. maya33 Senior Member


    Est-ce que quelqu'un connaît la traduction de pomme savonnette en anglais (pour la traduction d'un menu)? Il s'agit d'une pomme de terre, mais taillée pour ressembler à un savon.
    J'ai vu "soap apple" sur un site français, mais je pense que le traducteur a fait du Google trad ou autre. Est-ce que soap-shaped potato pourrait être une traduction possible ?

  2. Language Hound Senior Member

    American English
    No. I would avoid any mention of "soap" on a menu--not exactly appetizing!
    I assume the potato in question has been puréed or mashed and then probably
    squeezed out of a cone or implement similar to that used for decorating cakes.
    Do you have an image of this "pomme savonnette"?
    In general, I find French menus much more descriptive than American menus,
    perhaps because the presentation of the food is generally so much more important.
    Not to say that in fancier American restaurants you wouldn't find a "pomme savonnette"
    on your plate, but I doubt the American menu would go to any lengths to describe the shape.
  3. maya33 Senior Member

    I agree with you about soap not being appetizing.
    The potato isn't mashed... Maybe I should use the french sentence in this case or just say potato...

    Note de modération : Pas de lien audio-vidéo sans accord préalable (règle 4).
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 10, 2015
  4. Language Hound Senior Member

    American English
    Personally, I would just specify how the potato is cooked.
  5. Quaeitur

    Quaeitur Mod'elle

    Lille, France
    Maya, could you give us the complete sentence you are trying to translate? It would help us to find an expression that fits your context ;)
    The only real translation I've seen of it is an explanation: potatoes turned to look like a bar of soap in this recipe. But I agree that the bar of soap image isn't great... How about potatoes pared to the size of a rounded deck of cards ?
  6. Language Hound Senior Member

    American English
    While I agree that a description would be necessary in the context of instructions that are part of a recipe,
    I think that such a description would sound quite out of place on a menu.
  7. misterk Moderator

    Boston, MA, USA
    Try "chateau potatoes". (I'd never heard the term, but found it on several cooking sites.)
  8. maya33 Senior Member

    Thanks for your help. The exact sentence is "civet de homard bleu ivre de cognac, crackers aux algues et pomme savonnette au lard". I don't have the recipe so don't know exactly how it's cooked...
    About chateau potatoes, it sounds nice - the problem is I'm working for a real Château, and I'm afraid the clients will think it's the potatoe from the castle ;) So maybe I'll try the description indeed.
  9. Quaeitur

    Quaeitur Mod'elle

    Lille, France
    It seems that château potatoes is a way of cooking potatoes, not a shape I'm afraid.

    In the concept of an item on a menu, I would stick with potato.
  10. Kelly B

    Kelly B Senior Member

    USA English
    With potato medallions? (I'm making that up, just trying to evoke the shape in some other way.)
  11. maya33 Senior Member

    Thanks for the suggestion, but I googled it, and "potato medallions" already exist, and it's not the same shape. But I found by miracle "potato savonnette" in the menu of an american restaurant, so I think I'll use this :)
    Really, thanks a lot to all of you for your help and your efforts !!!!!!!
  12. wildan1

    wildan1 Moderando ma non troppo (French-English, CC Mod)

    Comparing a potato to a bar of soap sounds highly unappetizing in English--I would suggest something unrelated to soap.
    (Immediately it made me think of having my mouth washed out with a bar of soap as a child.)

    It is just one type of « pomme tournée », describing a potato carved into any specific shape.

    This previous thread suggested "turned potato".
  13. Language Hound Senior Member

    American English
    Like Misterk, I had never heard of chateau potatoes either.
    However, I have found several references to them online.
    From what I gather, it does refer to the shape, which is oval like a bar of soap.
    In the videos I watched, chateau potatoes were referred to as oval-shaped, barrel-shaped and seven-sided.

    In a short video, Chef Marc Vaca from Le Cordon Bleu Paris demonstrates how to turn chateau potatoes.
    He shows two other turned potatoes. The chateau potatoes are the largest, the cocotte the smallest.
    There is even a 32-second video of a machine called the "Château Potato Cutter," which turns regular potatoes into chateau potatoes.
    The video entitled "How to Turn Chateau Potatoes" showed another chef manually turning chateau potatoes.
    As these videos are all YouTube videos, I am not allowed to post the links here,
    but you can find them easily by googling.

    As there are different kinds of turned potatoes, I would go with "chateau potato."
    I should add that I had never heard "turned" used this way either.
    A "turned potato" sounds to me like a potato gone bad, but it is apparently culinary lingo.
    It was helpful for me to read the following:
    I also wouldn't worry about people confusing chateau potatoes with potatoes grown at the castle.
    No matter whose menu they appear on, the waitstaff will no doubt have to explain what they are,
    as is often the case when food is given a name that is not self-explanatory or not yet widely understood.

    If I had read "chateau potatoes" on a menu before learning all that I did today,
    I would have expected something rather elegant due to the name alone.
    And I don't think I would have been disappointed since they do look quite special.

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