Let’s talk about cabbage. It’s crunchy, sweet, lasts forever in the fridge and is surprisingly versatile, but doesn’t get nearly as much love as other vegetables. Let’s change that with Anna Jones’s winter red cabbage and apple soup, from her cookbook One: Pot, Pan, Planet.
“This is a cheerful, vibrant soup that ticks all the flavor boxes,” she writes. “I make [it] all year, as it’s both comforting in winter and vibrant enough to eat on a colder spring or summer day, too (think borscht). Sweet red cabbage comes with a pickled edge, earthy caraway and freshness from a couple of apples. The crunch from buttery toasted walnuts, brightness from dill and some leveling creaminess from crème fraîche finish it off.”
Jones uses a plant-based crème fraîche here, but a dairy version or some thick Greek yogurt would be delicious too, if you’re not vegan.
From One: Pot, Pan, Planet by Anna Jones. Copyright © 2021 by Anna Jones. Excerpted by permission of Alfred A. Knopf, a division of Penguin Random House LLC. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
1 pound red cabbage, finely shredded
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
Butter or extra-virgin olive oil, for frying
1 large red onion, finely chopped
3 celery stalks, finely chopped
1½ teaspoons caraway seeds
2 apples (any sharp eating variety) cored and cut into chunks
6⅓ cups vegetable stock
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 teaspoons honey or agave
½ cup walnuts, crumbled
Small bunch of dill, leaves chopped, some fronds reserved for garnishing
4 tablespoons crème fraîche, sour cream or thick Greek yogurt, to serve
1. Place the cabbage in a bowl with a generous pinch of salt and the red wine vinegar. Squeeze together in your hands, then set aside to pickle while you start on the soup.
2. Melt a little butter or oil in a heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the onion and celery and cook until soft and translucent, stirring occasionally, 10 to 15 minutes.
3. When the onions are soft, add the caraway seeds and stir for about 1 minute. Increase the heat and add the apples and three-quarters of the cabbage; fry until the cabbage begins to soften, about 5 minutes.
4. Add the stock, balsamic vinegar and honey or agave. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat, cover and simmer for 30 minutes. Uncover and simmer for another 10 minutes.
5. Meanwhile, heat a skillet over medium-high heat and add some oil. Once it’s very hot, add the remaining cabbage and cook until crisp. In the last couple of minutes, add the walnuts and half the dill.
6. To the soup, stir in the remaining dill and season to taste with salt and pepper. You can leave this as it is, but I like to blitz it with a handheld blender to make a smooth and vibrant purple soup.
7. Ladle the soup into warmed bowls and top each serving with the fried cabbage and walnuts, a spoonful of crème fraîche, sour cream or yogurt and some more dill if you like.