After an unseasonably warm fall, the air finally has a chill to it, and we’ve been building fires in our fireplace the last week or so. Puts me in the mood for soup. I freakin’ love soup. Probably because I like being warm and cozy, and nothing makes you quite as cozy as a hot bowl of soup. This week, I’ve made both cabbage soup and yesterday, in the middle of the snow storm that slammed the Mid-Atlantic, I whipped up some French Onion soup. But, the cabbage soup really hit it out of the park.
The recipe is from my Jamie at Home cookbook. I love it because it is organized by season, and he provides gardening tips for the featured vegetables.
The stock I used was a combination of stock I made from my Thanksgiving turkey from White Oak Ridge Farm, and some Wolfgang Puck organic free-range chicken stock. Instead of savoy cabbage, I bought an organic head of white cabbage. The kale, garlic, and rosemary came from the Monroe Farm Market. The bacon also came from White Oak Ridge Farm (when I picked up my turkey, I took a cooler and stocked up). The butter was from Homestead Creamery. The fontina, parmesean and anchovies were whatever I could find at the grocery store. The bread was frozen leftover bread from loaves of bread I buy throughout the year. I hate the heels of bread, or when it’s been in the fridge a while (yes, I always keep my bread in the fridge) it gets dried out. I just throw it in the freezer and use it for stuffing or croutons or whatever.
I made this soup last winter with red cabbage, and the soup turned purple. It tasted fine, but it wasn’t very appetizing. Speaking of tasting just “fine”, last year, I used turkey bacon (this was before I was in the “know” about eating local) and here’s another reason to eat local: this soup will blow you away if you use real bacon instead of turkey bacon. And, if you’re gonna buy real bacon over the lower fat turkey bacon, you might as well make sure the pig was fed a natural diet with no hormones or antibiotics and didn’t have it’s tail cut off or was not weened too early, nor lived in crate, for that matter. The taste is like night and day, too, by the way.