8 cups chicken broth, homemade or canned (may substitute vegetable broth for a vegetarian version)
1 bay leaf, dried
1/2 cup dry white wine (optional)
1 cup onion, finely chopped
1 cup white of leek, finely chopped
1 cup carrot, finely chopped
1 cup celery, finely chopped
1 1/2 cups green cabbage, shredded (may substitute spinach, kale, or other tender greens)
Salt and pepper
Combine the broth, wine and bay leaf on the stovetop and bring to a simmer. Add the chopped vegetables and let them cook for five to ten minutes until tender. Add the shredded greens and simmer until wilted, no more than five minutes.
Season to taste, then let sit for 15 to 20 minutes to let the flavors combine. Serve warm with a crusty French bread.
Soup can be kept up to a week refrigerated and will freeze for up to a year.
- You can add any leftover vegetables you have to this mix–broccoli, cauliflower, frozen peas defrosted, etc. Put them in at the same time you add the greens.
- Potatoes can make the soup a heartier meal. Before adding the chopped vegetables, peel and dice two or three large potatoes and cook in the simmering broth until firm but tender, about fifteen minutes. If you have potatoes already cooked, simply chop them and add them with the greens as you would any leftover veggies.
- For more protein and a richer flavor profile, slice two boned and cooked skinless chicken breasts. Add the chicken with the greens, making sure the meat is heated through before serving. As an alternative to the chicken or with it, add 3/4 cup cooked or canned red or white beans, also at the same time as the greens.
As you can see, it’s easy to experiment with this basic soup recipe to use up leftovers or create your own culinary masterpiece. Whatever you end up doing, you’re sure to enjoy the tantalizing smell of vegetable soup simmering on the stove and the taste of summer’s freshness on a cold winter day.
For another dish just perfect for the cold months, check out this cream of carrot and turnip soup with maple syrup.