Cabbage and Farro Soup
While the name might not be inspiring, the taste definitely is!
1 pound cabbage, savoy or green
1 medium onion, thinly sliced
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 garlic cloves, smashed and peeled
1 sprig of rosemary or thyme (optional because I’ve forgotten it each time, and not regretted it)
1 tablespoon red wine or white wine vinegar
2/3 cup uncooked farro
About 4 cups homemade or storebought chicken or vegetable broth
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
Shaved parmesan, to finish
Cut out the cabbage core and finely chop it. Cut the leaves into fine shreds or about 1/8-inch ribbons. Heat 1/4 cup olive oil in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the onion and cabbage core, some salt and pepper, and cook, stirring frequently, until the onion starts to soften but is not yet browned, about 5 to 7 minutes. Add the garlic and cook another 3 to 5 minutes, until the garlic softens too. Add the shredded cabbage leaves and herb sprig, if using. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cover the pot and let it steam a bit to soften the leaves, then toss the cabbage to combine with other ingredients. Cook, covered, until the cabbage is very sweet and tender, which will take anywhere from 15 to 30 minutes. Stir occasionally.
Meanwhile, in a small skillet, heat a glug of olive oil over medium and add the uncooked farro. Toast it, stirring, for a few minutes, until half a shade darker.
When the cabbage is ready, stir in the vinegar. Taste and season with more salt and pepper. Add toasted farro and broth. Bring mixture to a lazy simmer and cook for 25 to 35 minutes, until farro is tender and all the flavors are married. The soup will be very thick, but if you’d prefer more liquid, add another 1/2 cup broth or water. Taste and adjust seasoning again. Stir in lemon juice.
Ladle into bowls and finish each with a drizzle of olive oil and a shower of parmesan, with more parmesan passed at the table.
- I must have had a huge cabbage, cause I doubled the broth and it was still a thick soup. I could have doubled the farro too.
- Slice the onion pole to pole (like you do for French Onion Soup).
- I didn't like the lemon, so ended up only adding a few drops. I recommend adding a little at a time til it reaches your taste.
- Deb says that this soup keeps well frozen.