The weather in southern New Mexico took a cold turn. So, my Babe hankered for soup. I was looking through the soup rotation and found that I did not make cabbage soup since late last winter. The dish is hearty, healthful and savory. Our meals must always be gluten free because my Babe has Celiac disease.
I was taught old school writing and might be showing my age by writing “healthful“ instead of healthy. Our English teachers taught us “healthful” indicates something contributes to a healthy body or mind and “healthy” refers to the body’s or mind’s condition. Today, mostly I see “healthy” in food blogs and recipes or in articles pertaining to a certain manner of eating. Sister Catherine and my other English teachers must be cringing in Heaven. Every time I read the word healthy to describe a dish or a style of cooking I imagine a doctor measuring the meal’s blood pressure and temperature….and fondly remember those teachers.
- 1 cup uncooked organic brown rice
- Medium cabbage head. Green cabbage works best for this dish, in my opinion.
- 24 oz can of San Marzano peeled tomatoes, choose a certified brand. I use Cento and the extra dollar or two is well worth buying the certified brand. I cannot find a 14.5 oz can of certified so I overbuy, use half the can and save the other half for another meal that week.
- 1 zucchini
- 1 onion
- 1 cup of Cannellini beans. I used dry beans and began soaking at 7AM, that morning. Used Bubba, my electric pressure cooker to cook the soup.
- 8 oz of mushrooms – I used white
- 2 celery stalks
- 2 medium size carrots
- 1 cup organic brown rice
- 4 cloves of garlic
- 3-4 tsp of premixed Italian seasoning (dried herbs). I buy an organic mix.
- 2 tsp of ground black pepper (organic is our choice)
- 32 oz of organic/vegan vegetable broth plus water/if you think it is necessary. I’m okay with 32 ounces of broth because the veggies yield additional liquid under pressure. I buy Kitchen Basics’ brand of beef, chicken and vegetable broths. The Brand is certified gluten free and includes no salt options.
- Salt – I only salt slightly during cooking and we only lightly salt our plates, if at all.
- Your favorite crusty bread to line the soup bowl.
- Prepare cup of brown rice per directions – we buy in bulk and use 2 cups of water to 1 cup of uncooked rice. Turn to low and cover when only a bit of liquid present.
1 cup of dry Cannellini beans. I began soaking at 7 AM. Soaked bean cooking time in my pressure cooker is 12 minutes. I add one pressed garlic clove and one-half tsp of the Italian seasoning to the liquid. I cover the beans with about two inches with of broth. I also add 1Tbs of olive oil to minimize foaming. Once all in, I set the timer for 8 minutes and set pressure to high and press start. I prep the veggies and tomatoes while Bubba is pressurizing.
- Rinse and halve the cabbage. Core the cabbage and cut into quarter to half inch strips width wide. Cut the pile into half lengthwise. Repeat for second half. Set aside.
- Chop the onion, carrots and celery stalks. Set aside.
- Slice the mushrooms. Set aside.
- Open the San Marzano can and cut into dice. I use my kitchen shears for that task. Set the can aside.
- Peel the remaining garlic cloves. Set aside.
- When the 8-minute alarm sounded, I manually de-pressurized the cooker, removed the cover and loaded in the veggies, poured in half the can of San Marzano’s and half liquid into the pressure cooker.
- Then, pressed the remaining garlic cloves and added the Italian herb mix and the organic ground pepper.
- Stir to incorporate. Put the lid on and set the timer for 3 minutes and to high pressure. Pressed start. My pressure cooker turns out veggies the best in 3 minutes. Four minutes is pushing it.
- Take the lid off after the timer sounds. Set on a hot pad. Stir the soup.
- Sometimes, I have crusty Italian bread in the pantry. I’m the only one who is not Celiac in the house. So, I’ll rip off a nice chunk and line the bottom of the soup bowl with the chunk and then ladle in the soup. Mangia.
- To convert to slow-cooker meal, soak beans overnight then rinse, prep the ingredients per directions and load into the slow-cooker. Set for 6 hours. My slow-cooker has auto warm function. Also, for us, beans cook best for six hours max. Vegetable soup is ready to eat at six hours too. Your slow-cooker might differ in cooking time. For stove top, soaked beans generally must cook for two hours. I do not cook dry beans stove-top, only in the pressure cooker or slow-cooker so, double check that time.
- Note, prep time for soaking beans. 30-minute cook time includes prepping the ingredients while the beans are pressure cooking for the initial 8 minutes and pressurizing and depressurizing Bubba twice.