Kraut and Rib Soup
Reminiscent of the tart, earthy-flavored dishes of Eastern Europe, this peasant-style soup is a great choice for supper on cold days. Long, slow cooking is the key to success with the recipe, so be sure to get started well ahead of serving time.
3 to 3 1/2 pounds country-style pork ribs, trimmed of fat
3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 large onion, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon caraway seeds
2 dry bay leaves
1 (32-ounce) package refrigerated sauerkraut, drained and rinsed
1/2 pound cabbage, shredded
1/2 cup pearl barley
1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes in juice
2 quarts beef broth
- Cook ribs in a deep 6 to 8-quart pan over medium-high heat, turning as needed, until browned on all sides, about 25 minutes. Remove ribs from pan; set aside.
- Add vinegar to pan and stir to scrape browned bits free. Add oil, onion, caraway seeds, and bay leaves. Cook, stirring, until onion is translucent, about 3 minutes. Stir in sauerkraut, cabbage, barley and tomatoes with their juice.
- Return ribs to pan. Pour in broth. Bring to a boil over high heat; then reduce heat, cover, and simmer until meat pulls easily from bones, about 2 1/2 to 3 hours.
- Skim and discard fat from soup. If made ahead, let cool; then cover and refrigerate for up to 3 days. Reheat before serving.
- To serve, ladle soup into bowls.
Makes 6 servings.