Nov 29, 2013

Red and white cabbage soup with beans

Tuscan Ribollita with local cabbage, lots of it.

Recipe inspired by Gialllo Zafferano
time: 90 minutes

  • 1 kg (2 lbs, 1 small head) white cabbage, core removed, thinly sliced
  • 1 kg (2 lbs, 1 small head) red cabbage, core removed, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup dry beans, soaked overnight in 8 cups water and not drained
  • 1 slice prosciutto crudo, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 medium onions, sliced
  • 2 medium carrots, diced
  • 1 small celery root, diced
  • 2 medium potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 1 small leek, chopped
  • 3 teaspoons salt, quantity divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 3 Tablespoons olive oil
  1. Cook beans with prosciutto in 8 cups water on low heat till tender (about 30-40 min, depending on the bean type), skimming it at the begging and adding 1 teaspoon salt at the end. Don't discard the water. 
  2. In a biggest pot you have, heat oil on medium/high. Add onions, garlic, carrots and celery. Saute for 10 minutes. Add potatoes, leek, cabbage, rosemary, 2 teaspoons salt. Cook all the veggies for 15 minutes, stirring them often. Add water (with prosciutto) from cooking beans. Cook till vegetables are tender on low/medium heat with a lid on ajar about 40 minutes. 
  3. Blend small part of the soup with a hand blender. Blend about 1/2 beans with a hand blander. Add all the beans to the soup. Cook everything for another 10 minutes. Correct seasoning.

  • this cabbage soup doesn't taste like cabbage;
  • is it rosemary that transformed this bunch of vegetables into an exciting meal?
  • is it the combination of the two cabbages? Is it me?
  • Tuscan ribollita recipe uses savoy cabbage (the wrinkled one) and some other black cabbage leaves (that I don't know);
  • the savoy cabbage looked already dead at the market, so I got that tight-leaf, heavy, white and red type that grows here in the winter;
  • I used the mandolin slicer to shred the vegetable; fine pieces gave the soup a smoother texture;
  • two heads is a lot of cabbage...and soup, definitely a two-day affair for the three of us;
  • the soup gets better the second day.


  1. Love this soup look wonderful, I love soups all the time!!

  2. Thanks, Gloria. I'm cooking more soups this season than ever. They go well with a piece of a good dessert afterwards :))