Portuguese Cabbage Soup "Juliana" ❦ Sopa Juliana

Hi! I know it has been a while. I have been so busy planning my post-Covid opening, that I haven't had time to post recently. I do have a few posts lined up, and come September, things will be back in full swing here at Casa Castro. Juliana soup is a classic of the Portuguese kitchen. It is a cabbage soup made with Savoy cabbage or, couve Lombarda, as it is called in Portugal. It usually contains potato, carrot, turnip, zucchini (courgette), or Chayote Squash aka Chow Chow . I susspect the name Juliana is referring to how the cabbage is cut and not the name of a person. The cabbage is sliced thinly in the julienne method.

Our lovely friend brought us gorgeous zucchini from his allotment, so I knew I had to use them here.

It is ready in 20 minutes by doing something a bit different than my ancestors. I will boil the cabbage whole with the broth and cut it up afterward. Usually, the soup is made by adding the cabbage after the soup has been pureed and cooking further. I feel this is an unnecessary step and cooking the pureed soup further deteriorates the nutrients and overcooks them leading to a less fresh taste. Sorry Mom, lol.

A note about olive oil. All Portuguese soups contain olive oil. Some cooks will add it before or after cooking. I never do this. I add it once it is in my bowl, thus preserving the oil's nutritional integrity.


Portuguese Cabbage Soup "Juliana" ❦ Sopa Juliana

Serves 6 (200 ml. servings)

20 minutes

*Weights are for unpeeled vegetables

1200 ml. Water or vegetable stock (I used vegetable stock)

600 g. Potatoes

400 g. Carrots

300 g. Zuchinni (courgette), turnip, or Chow Chow squash

1 Savoy Cabbage, about 10 to12 leaves left whole. Disvard yellow inner core

1 Large onion, peeled and roughly chopped

1 Clove of garlic, peeled and left whole

Salt and pepper to taste

Extra virgin olive oil to serve.

Peel potatoes, carrots and zucchini. Cut into inch cubes of equal size.

  1. In a stock pot add all the vegetables and water or vegetable stock, if using. Stack the cabbage leaves on top of each other and place atop vegetables in pot. Don't worry if they don't touch the broth. Once lid is placed on and cooking begins, they will wilt and drop into pot. See photos below.

  2. Cover pot. Leaves might prevent it from closing, don't worry.

  3. Bring to the boil. Once boiling lower heat to low and set a timer for 15 minutes.

  4. After 15 minutes remove cabbage leaves with tongs and reserve on a plate and set aside.Remove the equivelent of 1 carrot and reserve also.

  5. Using an *imersion/stick blender, puree soup. Taste and adjust salt to taste.

  6. Roll up the cabbage leaves and slice thinly and cut the reserved carrots even smaller. Add all back to pureed soup.

  7. Ladle into bowls and drizzle with extra virgin olive oil.

*If you only have a trsadtional blender, you must wait until soup has cooled to room temperature to prevent accidents.