Cabbage Soup

Cabbage soup is not, as the name suggests, something that comes from the Gulag. It’s nourishing and good for you and delicious.   This recipe uses half a cabbage (that would have a medium-sized cabbage) which means it’s great for when you realise that you used half a cabbage last week lightly steamed with loads of butter and black pepper alongside some fish or sausages or pie, and now it’s sitting in the drawer of the fridge looking a bit lost. So you can take it out of the fridge, chop it up and make a lovely soup out of it.

About the ingredients:

The special Life is Jam principle of soup is that almost every soup in the whole world is made extra special by the addition of a little sprinkle of something just before serving. No, not cocaine. A herb, a spice, a dash of cream, some croutons. In the case of cabbage soup it’s chopped rosemary.

The stock can be meat-based or vegetable. You can find out all you need to know about stock here.

Enough for about eight servings.  Cost per serving 26p.


  • Half a chopped cabbage
  • 2 onions
  • 200g grated carrot
  • 50g semolina
  • 50g butter
  • 1 litre water
  • 1 litre stock
  • A sprig of rosemary, finely chopped.


  • A pan
  • A knife
  • A blender

Chop the onions and cabbage, grate the carrot and cook them slowly, slowly, slowly in the butter. A good way of doing it is to stick a butter paper on top of the vegetables which allows them to steam as well as cook in the butter. Let them cook for about 15 minutes until really soft.

Stir in the semolina and mix it all in well, then add the stock and let it all simmer for about ten minutes to be sure it’s really well cooked.  Blend until smooth.

Then add the milk and the chopped rosemary and reheat. As with all soups, it’s even better if you make it in advance and reheat. And it freezes well, of course.

Serve with more chopped rosemary.Cabbage soup

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