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Country Potato-and-Cabbage Soup

Photo: © Kana Okada
Yield 4
At The Restaurant: $10 per person. Guanciale (pork jowl) adds salty richness.
At Home: $4 per person. Use bacon, which costs less than guanciale.

Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 ounces thick-cut bacon, diced
  • 1 onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 leek, white and tender green parts thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 6 parsley sprigs
  • 6 thyme sprigs
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 pound small red potatoes, thinly sliced
  • 6 cups chicken stock
  • 1 pound green cabbage, finely shredded 4 cups
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 2 tablespoons snipped chives
  • 3 1/2-inch-thick slices of country bread, cut into cubes
  • 2 garlic, lightly smashed
  • 2 tablespoons minced parsley

How to Make It

  1. In a soup pot, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil. Add the bacon and cook over moderately high heat until crisp, 5 minutes. Add the onion and leek and cook over low heat until softened, 10 minutes. Add the wine and simmer until nearly evaporated, 5 minutes.

  2. Tie the parsley sprigs, thyme sprigs and bay leaf with string; add to the pot along with the potatoes and stock. Bring to a boil, then simmer until the potatoes are tender, 10 minutes. Add the cabbage, season with salt and pepper and simmer until the cabbage is tender, 10 to 15 minutes longer. Discard the herb bundle. Stir in the chives.

  3. Meanwhile, in a medium skillet, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil. Add the bread and garlic and cook over moderate heat, stirring, until the croutons are golden brown, 6 minutes; discard the garlic. Season with salt and sprinkle with the parsley.

  4. Ladle the soup into deep bowls. Sprinkle with the croutons and serve.