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Cabbage soup with a California red #winePW

I am so excited to share with you my selection for the Wine Pairing Weekend: Tasting California: Cookbook Tour Paired with California Wine, hosted by Jane at Always Ravenous. Join us on Twitter Saturday, March 14th at 11:00 AM ET for our chat on inspiring cookbook recipes paired with California Wines and all new blog posts from the Wine Pairing Weekend group.

While researching for the best pairing for this dish, I learned a lot about California wines in the process. Let me share with you some of my favorite fun facts.
  • 543,000 acres of grapes are planted in 139 American Viticultural Areas (AVA)
  • More than 110 varietals are grown here
  • 4600 winemakers
  • California produces 90% of American wines
  • The most popular wine from California is Chardonnay
Since it is still officially winter, I chose this deliciously thick and hearty soup by Julia Child to feature. We have made this soup often and it is so good, especially the second time around! I am a big fan of French cooking but we like to make the recipes our own, after making it the original way first. The complex and deep flavors of beef and cabbage are softened by the sweet carrots and rice (we flip between rice and potatoes for the starch.)  We like a hearty wine to accompany this soup and this go around we chose a Cabernet Sauvignon from Mina Mesa Wines in Greenfield, California.

My husband and I like to find an affordable wine and this one is under $10 a bottle. This wine is from the Paso Robles AVA and is home to more than 200 wineries. The growing conditions are ideal for more than 40 varietals including Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah, Viognier and Roussanne and Zinfandel. It has been described as "A smooth Paso wine, the aromas are fruity and dark with raspberry and black cherry notes. The palate matches adding in vanilla oak notes to the mix. The lengthy finish is impressive."

Paso Robles Map
The area was first introduced to wine by Franciscan monks in the 1790s.  The name Paso Robles (Pass of the Oaks) was given in 1828 and California is granted statehood in 1850.  You will always know that you are getting a Paso Robles wine as there is a law saying that the name must be prominent on the label!
Here are some other California wine pairings with recipes from cookbooks we love!
  • A Taste of Ojai: Chef Robin Goldstein and Topa Mountain
    Wines by Gwen at Wine Predator
  • Bean and Cheese Panchos with a California Rosé by Wendy of A Day in the Life on the Farm
  • Cabbage Soup with a California Red by Terri of Our Good Life
  • California Cooking Gaby Style with California Wine Pairing by Jane of Always Ravenous
  • Eat your Peas - Pairing, California-Style by Linda of My Full Wine Glass
  • Napa History with Gamble Family Wines & a Lamb Feast with Friends by Nicole of Somm's Table
  • Pair Homeroom Mac 'n Cheese with Sparkling Wine by Deanna of Asian Test Kitchen
  • Picturing California on the Plate and in the Glass by Jeff of Food Wine Click!
  • Savory Dutch Baby, Schramsberg Mirabelle Brut Rosé, and a Few Other California Favorites by Camilla of Culinary Adventures with Camilla
  • Sirloin Steak Tacos with Paso Robles Zinfandel by David of Cooking Chat
  • Tasting California with Merry Edwards Pinot Noir and Gaby
    Dalkin’s Pulled Pork Sliders by Cindy of Grape Experiences

Cabbage Soup (Soupe aux Choux-Garbure) inspired by Julia Child

Cabbage Soup (Soupe aux Choux-Garbure) inspired by Julia Child

Yield: 8
prep time: 10 Mcook time: 30 Mtotal time: 40 M
The main difference between this cabbage soup and Julia's is the cut of meat. Using ground beef makes the over all cooking time much shorter.


  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 cup onion, diced
  • 1 cup carrots, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 4 cups beef broth
  • 1 (28 ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 4 cups green cabbage, coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 cup long-grained rice or 3-4 c cubed small potatoes
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon oregano
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon  soy sauce
  • salt and pepper to taste


How to cook Cabbage Soup (Soupe aux Choux-Garbure) inspired by Julia Child

  1. Cook the beef, onions and carrots (and potatoes if using) in a large stockpot over medium-high heat, before draining excess grease.
  2. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.
  3. Add the broth, tomatoes, tomato paste, cabbage, rice, paprika, thyme, oregano, and bay leaves, bring to a boil, reduce the temperature and simmer until the rice is tender about 15-20 minutes. (skip this part if using potatoes)
  4. Mix in the balsamic vinegar, Worcestershire sauce and soy sauce before seasoning with salt and pepper to taste!
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Let me know your favorite California wine, especially if it is a good buy!

Would you like to comment?

  1. Another winery I've never heard of! Thanks for the introduction, Terri. Can't wait to get my hands on a bottle...and to try your soup. Cheers.

  2. This post is so timely because I am ready to have a little wine after this stressful week. That pairing looks perfect for a dinner for me and my husband.

  3. I love soup like this. I've made lots of homemade veggie soup, but I've never made a cabbage soup like this. It looks good!

  4. I've never had soup like this before. I'm intrigued! I am sure I'll like it. I do enjoy a soup when it's cold out.

  5. This cabbage soup sounds so yummy! I love how simple the ingredients are so it seems to come together pretty quickly.

  6. With everyone staying in because of the coronavirus, now is a good time to stock up on yummy wines. I'd definitely have a lovely night in with a good red and a bowl of cabbage soup!

  7. i love a good hearty cabbage soup. especially during the rainy season. thank you for this recipe. will be pinning it.

  8. Oooh, that looks really tasty, I would love to try that soup (and the wine ofcourse!)

  9. OH, it's like stuffed cabbage in a bowl. Can't wait to try this recipe and I think I will search out a bottle of Mina Mesa. This is a new to me winery.

  10. I made stew with cabbage, but I don't think I've ever had cabbage soup before. That looks delicious. Thank you for the recipe. -LYNNDEE

  11. Love Paso Robles wine - and that soup looks like it would be so comforting in these trying times. Thanks for your post!

  12. Now this sounds like a great twist on cabbage soup - sometimes all need is a nice warming bowl of soup and this one sounds so delicious to make.

  13. I am drooling over this soup! So perfect for a comfort weeknight dinner!

  14. My son loves cabbage. So perfect for me to prepare for him. I love soups too. Will plan out

  15. Looks like a fascinating pairing - I can't remember when I last made cabbage soup! Thank you!

  16. It's still soup season in Minnesota, and this looks good!

  17. WOW. adding that california red wine makes it so powerful. i wonder how it tastes... <3

  18. Well, since I don't do wine anymore, I will just settle for the cabbage soup. It should be so nice, I presume.

  19. Cabbage is seasonal here in India and vanishes from the market when summer sets it. Before it is not available I would like to try out this soup. I have only had cabbage soup once and that too in a wedding reception. Will try this recipe of yours.

  20. Anonymous8:56 AM

    Looks like something I need to try! Thanks for sharing!

  21. I love a good bowl of soup especially in these uncertain times. Julia Child + Soup + Wine = Comfort!

  22. This looks like a wonderful and comforting pairing -- I think we all need a little of that now.


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