It’s that time of year again where in great anticipation of fall, I go ahead and start wearing my flannels even if it means I am a sweaty mess! I LOVE fall. The smell of the changing leaves, the thought of sitting by a bonfire in a sweatshirt, and yes, even the first sip of that pumpkin spice beverage (no judgements) are the things that I look forward to all year. It’s around this time that I also switch from drinking iced coffee to hot coffee and start making a lot more soups. A soup recipe I recently revived was one from my childhood. With a little taste of nastalgia in each bite, cabbage and bean soup sounds humble but is quite tasty and a welcome change from my overused chili recipe. Not only does it pack a lot of flavor, it is SUPER healthy (unless you pair it with my double butter buttermilk cornbread...then it is healthy AND buttery-deliciousness!).
I usually buy a head of cabbage at the store every week because it is super cheap and healthy. If you are a cabbage hater, I would challenge you to try this recipe because the strong cabbage flavor is masked by the other ingredients. The cabbage acts more as a texture that pairs well with the beans. During the first few years of marriage, my husband wouldn’t eat cabbage but I have since curated some awesome cabbage recipes (to be shared later) that his tastebuds approve of.
The best part about this soup is you can throw all the ingredients in the crockpot and forget it until dinner time. Fast, easy, cheap...my kind of recipe! The only prep is cutting the onion, garlic, and cabbage. Something that has saved me even more time is buying these frozen crushed garlic cubes at Trader Joe’s. It gives you all the flavor of fresh garlic without the prep and the added bonus of not having your hands smell like garlic for days after. Trader Joe’s also carries chopped basil frozen cubes. I really liked the addition of the basil to this bowl of soup because it gave it a sweetness that paired well with the cabbage.
Using vegatable stock as the base is an essential part in giving depth of flavor and marrying all the ingredients. If you are a fan of spicy, throw some tabasco sauce on the table to serve alongside the soup.