Crockpot Cabbage & Beef Soup

Red Wine Beef Soup
Photography by Corey White

Throughout our lives there are times when means are slim and eating with a group is cheaper than eating by ourselves.  These times usually call for crockpot meals, you know the type; a meat, a starch, some vegetables, and a whole bunch of liquid to to make it seem like there’s more than there actually is?  That’s exactly what I’m talking about.  A good old fashioned one pot meal, and this time I was cooking at work, with a singular crockpot, a nice plastic cutting board, and a horribly dull serrated blade.  Other than that there was not much in the ways of cooking, save for a pair of grilling tongs that came in handy more than once!  This was a privation meal, everyone wanted to save money and eat hearty, so I went with things on sale, cabbage was less than $.70 for a whole head, tri-tip was $6.00 for 2.5lbs, carrots were $1.25 per pound.  So these were the things chosen, and after a long night of cooking and some seasoning tweaking at the end, we had a delicious soup that was filling, tangy, melty, and most importantly beefy!

 

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 Head of Cabbage (just regular old cabbage) – Halved, then sliced
  • 1lb Baby Carrots
  • 1 Large Yellow Onion – Rough Chopped
  • 5-6 Red Potatoes – Rough Chopped
  • 8 Cloves Garlic – Sliced
  • 2 1/2lbs Tri-Tip (Silver Skin Trimmed)
  • 1/2-1lb  Spare Ribs (UK cut)
  • 1 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1 Bottle of Red Wine (Merlot)
  • 1 Quart of Beef Broth
  • 1 Tbsp Rubbed Sage
  • 2 Bay Leaves
  • 2-3 Tbsp Paprika (I used 3)

 

RECIPE

  1. Bring tri-tip and ribs up to room temperature after liberally salting and peppering
  2. Heat your crock-pot to high heat
  3. Add the olive oil
  4. Chop your tri-tip and put it fat side down in the crock-pot (or sear it in a separate pan, then deglaze with beef stock and add to crockpot)
  5. Cook 10-20 minutes until the fat has browned and released some juices
  6. Add the ribs
  7. Add all the vegetables (save half the carrots and cabbage)
  8. Pour in red wine and half of the beef broth
  9. Add 1-2 tsp salt and pepper
  10. Add bay leaves
  11. Cover
  12. Turn heat to Low
  13. Cook for 8-12 hours
  14. Add the remaining beef broth, carrots, and cabbage
  15. Cook on Low, 1 more hour
  16. **Optional** You can saute a bit of the remaining cabbage in a White Balsamic Vinegar for a garnish that brings bright acidity to the dish
  17. Serve with French Bread for dipping

 

The cabbage is my favorite part of this soup; the first half that you put in the first day of cooking is texturally contrasted greatly by the cabbage you add at the beginning of the second day.  Then you end up with cabbage you can slurp, and cabbage you can crunch into!  This soup cost less than $27.00 to make and fed four people for almost three days, that’s right it only cost each of us $2.25 per day to eat.  This is the first of many soups that will be made though, and not all will be made to be cooked on a budget, but this is a great recipe for something that will, most importantly, taste great, last a while, and fill you up! 

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