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Slow Cooker Cabbage Beef Soup

  stock cabbage 

‘Tis the season!  If you’re anything like me, you’ve probably already overdosed on rich, sweet, and marvellously decadent holiday foods.  It seems that every day, there are plates of beautifully-decorated cookies and pastries in the staff room at my workplace, and I’ve been baking up a storm as well.  Then there are the gifts of chocolates…and everyone knows I can’t resist them!   But even I have to admit that after awhile, all the treats become a little too much, and I find myself craving something homemade and hearty.  The cold weather and snow we’ve been receiving in Calgary only adds to my need for winter comfort food. 

For me, that means soup! 

My final CSA baskets before Christmas contained a medley of delicious ingredients:  a small red cabbage, bundles of sweet carrots, small golden potatoes, purple heirloom garlic and
handfuls of small yellow onions.  I happened to have some leftover tomato juice and a small container of homemade beef broth in the freezer, so I was pretty much set. 

If you find yourself crunched for time (isn’t that a state of being?) or just wanting to devote your time to visiting with family and friends instead of slaving away in the kitchen, just pop this soup in the slow-cooker and let it do all the work. 

It’s best served with your favourite homemade bread or rolls.

Slow-Cooker Cabbage and Beef Soup 

(If you are a vegetarian, just omit the beef and substitute vegetable broth). 

1 small head red or green cabbage, chopped into bite-sized pieces
3 small potatoes, peeled, chopped into bite-sized pieces
3 large carrots, peeled, chopped into bite-sized pieces
1 large onion, peeled, finely chopped
2 large garlic cloves, peeled, finely chopped
½ lb beef stewing meat, chopped into bite-sized pieces
2 tbsp oil
2 cups tomato juice
2 cups beef broth
3 cups water
1 bay leaf
Salt and pepper, to taste

Heat oil in a small frying pan over medium heat.  Add stewing meat and brown, turning once, for 5 minutes.  Remove from heat and place meat in the slow cooker.  Add the remaining ingredients and stir to combine.   Place the lid on the slow cooker and set on “LOW” for 8 to 10 hours.   Remove the bay leaf before ladling soup out into bowls.  Serve piping hot and enjoy!