Polish Cabbage and Sauerkraut Soup Recipe - Kapuśniak

cabbage soup schi
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  • 2 hrs 30 mins
  • Prep: 30 mins,
  • Cook: 2 hrs
  • Yield: 10-12 servings soup
Ratings (14)

This recipe for Polish kapuśniak is made with fresh cabbage, sauerkraut and vegetables in a beefy-tomato broth. Make this soup one day in advance so it can be defatted before serving. Many kapuśniaks are made with either fresh cabbage OR sauerkraut, but this recipe packs a double punch. Serve with Polish light rye bread for a complete meal. This makes a large quantity but it's a good candidate for the freezer. See also this Ukrainian Kapusnyak recipe.

What You'll Need

  • 4 slices chopped bacon
  • 1 large chopped onion
  • 2 celery ribs cut into 1/4-inch slices
  • 4 peeled carrots cut into 1/4-inch rounds
  • 2 large potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch dice
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 small head shredded cabbage
  • 2 pounds unsmoked pork spareribs, cut into 2-rib pieces
  • 1 meaty ham bone or ham hock
  • 1 pound sauerkraut, drained, juice reserved
  • 8 ounces tomato sauce
  • 4 quarts beef stock
  • 1 heaping teaspoon sweet Hungarian paprika
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • Chopped flat-leaf parsley for garnish
  • Sour cream for garnish

How to Make It

  1. In a large Dutch oven or stock pot, sear pork ribs on both sides over medium-high heat. There should be enough fat on the ribs so additional fat should not be required. If the ribs are very lean, lightly spray the pot with cooking spray before searing. Remove browned ribs to a plate and reserve.
     
  2. Add bacon to pot and fry until most of the fat has rendered out. Add onions, celery, carrots, potatoes and garlic to the pot and cook until onion is translucent. Add fresh cabbage and cook until it collapses. Return spareribs to the pot and add ham bone or hock, sauerkraut, tomato sauce, beef stock, paprika, bay leaf and sugar. Mix well. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook about 2 hours or until meat falls from the bones.
     
  1. Remove ribs and ham bone or hock from the soup, let cool slightly and remove all bones and cartilage from meat. Chop meat into bite-size pieces, if necessary, and return to the pot. If you prefer a slightly more sour soup, add some of the reserved sauerkraut juice.
     
  2. Cool the soup in an ice-water bath and then refrigerate. The next day, skim off the congealed fat and reheat. Adjust seasonings, if necessary. Serve in warmed bowls with a dollop of sour cream and sprinkle of chopped parsley, if desired.