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 Cabbage Soup

Mrs Beeton Recipes Index Page

Estimated Time: 3 hrs

Servings: 4 bowls of soup

Non-standard Cooking Utensils: A large pan.


Ingredients:

½ medium cabbage separated into leaves and roughly chopped

2 carrots chopped roughly

1 onion chopped roughly

2 slices of lean bacon

Salt and pepper to taste

1.2 litres (2.2 pints) of medium stock.

Cooking Method

1. Stir fry the cabbage leaves in a tablespoon of oil at a high temperature for one minute, tossing it around the pan.

2. Remove the cabbage, place the bacon over the base of the pan.

3. Place the cabbage, carrots and onion over the bacon in the pan.

4. Add 5 tablespoons of the stock to the pan and simmer gently for 15 minutes.

5. Add the remainder of the stock and simmer for a further 45 minutes.

6. Skim any fat from the surface of the soup, season with salt and pepper  and serve in warm bowl.

THE CABBAGE
It is remarkable, that although there is no country in the world now more plentifully supplied with fruits and vegetables than Great Britain, yet the greater number of these had no existence in it before the time of Henry VIII. Anderson, writing under the date of 1548, says, “The English cultivated scarcely any vegetables before the last two centuries. At the commencement of the reign, of Henry VIII. neither salad, nor carrots, nor cabbages, nor radishes, nor any other comestibles of a like nature, were grown in any part of the kingdom; they came from Holland and Flanders.”

The original of all the cabbage tribe is the wild plant sea-colewort, which is to be found wasting whatever sweetness it may have on the desert air, on many of the cliffs of the south coast of England. In this state, it scarcely weighs more than half an ounce, yet, in a cultivated state, to what dimensions can it be made to grow! However greatly the whole of the tribe is esteemed among the moderns, by the ancients they were held in yet higher estimation. The Egyptians adored and raised altars to them, and the Greeks and Romans ascribed many of the most exalted virtues to them. Cato affirmed, that the cabbage cured all diseases, and declared, that it was to its use that the Romans were enabled to live in health and without the assistance of physicians for 600 years. It was introduced by that people into Germany, Gaul, and, no doubt, Britain; although, in this last, it may have been suffered to pass into desuetude for some centuries. The whole tribe is in general wholesome and nutritive, and forms a valuable adjunct to animal food.

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