Time was ticking for the small head of Savoy cabbage I bought at the Santa Monica Farmer’s Market. I would have loved to make a beautiful soup like Lucy did but I’ll save that until I get a bigger cabbage. I thought about a simple saute perhaps with a slice of juicy meatloaf and a dollop of stone-ground mustard but I was in no mood to make meatloaf and not really in a mood to eat meat either. Instead I turned to Marcella Hazan’s Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking. I knew there was at least a few Savoy cabbage recipes in there. But I confess I didn’t end up following any of those either. Instead I made Rice and Smothered Cabbage Soup which diplomatically calls for “green, red, or Savoy cabbage”.
First the cabbage must be “smothered” by shredding it fine and cooking it slowly in a covered pan with olive oil and a little bit of wine vinegar. Then bring it up to boil with beef broth and add some Arborio rice and cook until rice is just done but still has a bite to it. Finish it with grated parmigiano-reggiano and butter. Doesn’t it sound and look like comfort in a bowl? It certainly was. And tasty too. I ate my bowl with a parmesan toast. A spoonful of warm cabbage rice soup and a bite of crunchy cheesy parmesan toast. That’s how my dinner went down, warm soup style.