I saw a recipe for “Colcannon Soup” in a recent Cook’s Illustrated issue covering soups and stews. Since I had half a head of cabbage in the fridge and no real plan, I decided to take the idea of potato and cabbage soup and go with it.
I chopped up three slices of bacon and cooked that in a 5 1/2 quart Dutch oven. Scooped out the crispy bacon and threw into the bacon fat two medium onions, diced. Saute’d that a bit. Then added a half a head of cabbage, sliced thin. While the vegetables softened, I seared a ham steak and then diced it up. Ham steaks tend to give off a lot of water. That ham flavored water went into the pot with the cabbage.
When the vegetables were soft, I added a few cloves of garlic. I like my garlic press a lot. So, that’s how I added it. You could mince it instead. Once the garlic became fragrant, I tossed in a couple of tablespoons of flour and cooked that for about a minute or two. Then added 1/2 cup of dry white wine. Cooked that into the mixture until it was kind of thick. Just a few minutes. Then came the chicken broth. I used about 6 cups. I let the whole mixture simmer for ten or fifteen minutes, until the veggies were really soft.
The potatoes came next. About 4 smallish russets. I let the soup simmer until the potatoes were soft enough to start to dissolve into the broth. Then, I added 1/2 heavy cream and about that much sour cream. A few sprinkles of cayenne, black pepper, adjust the salt and we’re ready for the ham. I always add a meat like ham or sausage at the very end because the longer you cook it, the more your soup will taste like ham and the ham will taste like nothing.
Another dollop of sour cream on top might be good. Some chives… Yum!