Tag Archives: cabbage

Hungarian Cabbage Soup

I went on a trip to Hungary once. It was only later that I learned they have a marzipan museum in Szabo where you can see, among other things, a life-sized marzipan Michael Jackson. I don’t have very many regrets about my life but missing that museum is definitely one of them. Luckily, on that same trip I was able to see baby Jesus’ diaper so I can’t say the trip was a total bust.

I love Eastern Europe and the food, especially sausage which is often, unfortunately, the only dining option when traveling to those parts of the world. If you would have asked me long ago why I would never go veg I think a love of sausage would be up there. I wish I would have known then about seitan sausages because they are all I need to be a happy sausage lovin girl. Here in Austin you can even get whole wheat flour from the farmer’s market so if you wanted to make local cruelty-free sausages you could do it with much ease.

This soup recipe is everything that Lazy Smurf’s Guide to Life is all about. The recipe was really easy, the dish was very hearty and comforting, the recipe yielded a ton, the ingredients were healthy, seasonal, and local, it has Eastern European roots, was really cheap to make, and it tastes fantastic! That is a lot to ask for of a cabbage soup but I was really happy with how it turned out. Using seitan sausages really made the soup pretty wonderful but if you don’t have any around the soup would still be good. There is a lot of vinegar that we put in at then end which gives it the characteristic sour flavor but if you are not a fan you can leave it out or add a little at a time to taste.

Hungarian Cabbage Soup

2 onions, sliced into half moons
1 small cabbage, chopped
water, broth, or water mixed with broth powder
28 oz can of tomatoes, chopped
2 cloves of garlic, chopped
2 large potatoes, cut into chunks
2 Tbsp red wine vinegar
1 Tbsp brown sugar
2 sausages
1 Tbsp vegeta or seasoning powder
1 tsp liquid smoke

In a large soup pot saute the onions while chop up the rest of the ingredients. Once they are beginning to brown add the cabbage and the garlic followed by enough water to cover all the vegetables. Add the tomatoes and simmer for 30 minutes. In a small skillet saute the sausages with a little bit of olive oil until the turn brown. Add them to the soup pot along with the potatoes. Simmer for another 20 minutes uncovered. Add the vinegar, sugar, liquid smoke, and seasoning powder and taste. Adjust and enjoy with some hearty bread. Mmm soup.

The Quest for Kalonji, making the Bengali 5-Spice

I haven’t had any money in the past few weeks. Things are usually pretty tight but between going to Costa Rica, Dan crashing his car, and not getting paid since December 15th I have been beyond broke. I have been mostly eating rice and beans and other favorites from the pantry but I knew I needed some fresh vegetables. I went to the store attempting to spend only 5 dollars, I needed onions and garlic and some sort of green. When money is the tight the best thing to buy is usually cabbage because it is good for you and cheaper than the rest of the leafy greens.

The next day I was on Fat Free vegan and she had an Indian style recipe that looked too good to pass up but I also noticed that it was a side dish for a Cauliflower dahl that she raved about in a previous post. Since I also had cauliflower it seemed like the perfect meal, except that I was missing one spice, Kalonji.

I had never heard of it before so of course I became overcome with a burning desire to find it as soon as possible. Later that day Dan was in the area of Whole Foods so I sent him on a mission, they didn’t have it. The next day I went to the middle-eastern grocery store by my house that sells some other “ethnic” ingredients but they didn’t have it either. I ended up making samosas that night anticipating making an Indian feast later in the week and having the leftover samosas. I spoke with an Indian friend at work who told me she would look for it but had never heard of it. The next day, I stopped by Central Market, our huge, high-end, has-every-kind-of-produce store. I looked all over; the Indian section, the bulk section, the spice section. I was standing gaping at the spices when a friendly worker asked if I needed help. She couldn’t find the spices either but told me about a secret south side Indian grocery store. Thrilled, I went on my way to the access road of the IH-35 and nearly passed a non-descript Indian grocery store. I walked in the front door and the first thing I saw was Kalonji! I also found dried mangos for amchoor, black urad dhal, and some tamarind chutney.

cauliflower-dal-with-panch-phoran