There is a chill in the air, even here in NW Florida, so there is nothing better than a big pot of soup … even better if it has been in the slow cooker all day and is waiting to be served when you get home from a long day at work or a hectic afternoon of running those holiday errands! I love stuffed cabbage, but I’ll be honest, at this point in my life I can usually find better things to do with my time (hence my Chicken Enchilada Casserole — no stuffing or rolling here either!). I usually make this soup in my slow cooker (and originally got the recipe from a Face Book site which I can no longer find) but wasn’t thinking this morning as I had a leisurely read of the Sunday paper and forgot to get it going. So, instead, the first set of directions are for on top of the stove, followed by the slow cooker directions.
1 lb. ground turkey or hamburger
1 medium onion, chopped
1 – 28 oz. can crushed tomatoes
5-6 cups water
5 beef bouillon cubes
1/3 cup barley
2 teaspoons sugar
1 clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon ground pepper
¼ teaspoon Tabasco
½ head cabbage, chopped (I had a small head of cabbage so used the entire head, minus the tough outside leaves)
Brown meat (I have to say that I am a ground turkey convert — I love the taste and the limited fat content; it just doesn’t feel “greasy” like hamburger), drain and rinse. Chop the onion. Dissolve the bouillon cubes, by adding to 2-3 cups of the water and microwaving on high for 2-3 minutes. Place tomatoes, onions, barley, sugar, garlic, pepper, water/bouillon (or beef broth), pepper, and Tabasco into a large soup pot. Mix well.
Chop the cabbage (bite-size pieces).
This is another one of those soup recipes which freezes beautifully.
To prepare in your slow cooker:
Please chopped cabbage in bottom of slow cooker. Mix browned meat and all other ingredients in a large bowl. Gently pour on top of cabbage in bottom of slow cooker. Do not stir. Cook on low for 8-9 hours. Stir, then cook for one more hour.