In an earlier blog post (CSA week 8), I mentioned that I had received a head of cabbage. As it was a rather a large head for just two people, I had to find something other than coleslaw to make. My search led me Cabbage, Potato and Leek Soup, a recipe by none other than Melissa Clark from The New York Times. This recipe appeared in her New York Times column A Good Appetite entitled “Cabbage Flexes Its Muscles Three Ways,” from March 9, 2012.
For the recipe you’ll need unsalted butter, leeks, cabbage, fresh garlic, russet potatoes, chicken or vegetable stock, kosher salt, fresh thyme branches, black pepper and grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese. The recipe takes one hour and 20 minutes. In order to make the cooking process go a bit faster, I followed a suggestion of roasting the shredded cabbage in the oven to achieve better caramelization rather than doing it in batches on the stovetop. I used homemade chicken stock and used another suggestion of adding a rind of parmesan cheese as the soup cooked…delicious addition.
Once the cabbage was caramelized, I added the balance of the ingredients to the pot and cooked for approximately 50 minutes. When the soup was done, I used my immersion blender to puree the soup.
What a delicious soup! The cabbage flavor mellowed in the cooking process, you could detect a subtle taste of the leeks and the potatoes gave the soup just enough body and creaminess without the addition of cream. Now you're probably thinking, it’s been so hot, why eat soup? I had two containers in my chest freezer in preparation for colder weather when husband, who was feeling under the weather, requested a bowl.
Week 9 of our CSA box contained pea shoots, broccoli, frying peppers, green squash, onions, blueberries and white peaches.
The pea shoots became part of tossed salad and the broccoli was steamed for supper one evening. I have several frying peppers that may become part of peppers, onions and eggs tomorrow morning. The onions are being stored in my cool, semi-dark basement. The blueberries and peaches were eaten out of hand by granddaughters.
Our newest box, which will be picked up tomorrow contains corn, arugula, cherry tomatoes, more onions, yellow nectarines, basil, pickles, dill and yogurt.
Hopefully my daughter gives me the pickles so I can make another batch of classic dill pickles. Depending on the number of nectarines, I could make a Blueberry Nectarine Buckle. This recipe is from Gourmet Magazine, July 1991 and is the epitome of summer.
I have several pots of basil in my yard and don’t need more basil. However, if you want to save basil for use at a later date, blanch it. Remove the leaves from the stem and place in a pot of boiling water for 5 seconds. Immediately remove and transfer to a bowl of ice water. Place a blanched leave or two in each compartment of an ice cube tray and fill with water; freeze. When you need fresh basil, pop an ice cube out.
Cabbage, Potato and Leek Soup
By Melissa Clark
From the article “Cabbage Flexes Its Muscles Three Ways,”
The New York Times, March 9, 2012
Yield: 4 servings
Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
3 medium leeks, white and light green parts, thinly sliced
8 cups shredded cabbage
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 medium russet potatoes, peeled and diced
2 cups chicken or vegetable stock
2 ½ teaspoons kosher salt
2 thyme branches
½ teaspoon black pepper
Grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, to serve
From the “Cooking Notes” that appears after the recipe, I followed a suggestion that recommended roasting the shredded cabbage in a 400° for 15 minutes. First, drizzle some olive oil over the cabbage and season salt and pepper then toss before roasting. You can even the finely chopped garlic to the mix.
Another suggestion was to add a rind of Parmesan cheese to the soup another layer of flavor.
A former teacher, shop-a-holic, empty-nester redefining quick, family approved dinners.