January 2017 was the coldest January in Vienna in more than 2 decades. On winter days like these, I can’t really help myself thinking about a bowl of hot soup.
I then cooked rolled cabbage soup for my husband for the first time. When I was younger, I always made it back home for my dad. It’s a clear soup, tastes is very neutral, with a nice smell of shiitake and sesame oil.
Started with grounding pork. I chose pork neck (my favourite part), as there’s just enough fat. Grind it our so called vintage meat grinder, which we got it from my husband’s grandma’s cellar hihi.
Then marinated the meat with the paste consists of coriander root, garlic, and white or mixed pepper, pounded in a mortar until turned into paste. Oh! The peppers, I love Kampot peppers the most, we got them from Cambodia. They are the best! Added a bit of salt, oyster sauce, few drops of sesame oil, and 1/4 tsp of sugar, just to balance the taste.
I put sliced spring onion and diced shiitake mushroom to enhance the taste, texture, and smell.
Kept the pork aside in room temperature (as anyway it’s not above 20 degree celsius here) for around 20 mins. Cut the cabbage and boil them quickly in cooking water, I also boiled long spring onion leaves, they were later used to tied the rolled cabbage. After everything is cooked, I put them in a bowl of cold water.
I laid a single cooked cabbage, put the meat, rolled and tied it with spring onion to keep it tight.
Then I steamed the rolls (more like boiled with small amount of water, as I don’t have steam pot here) until they are cooked.
Soup itself, I used home made soup base paste we got as a Christmas gift. Just put it in boiling water, added a hint of soya sauce, added the rest of the meat, and some slices of shiitake. Put the rolls in a deep bowl, followed with hot soup, and it was already ready to be put on our dining table!
We had it with steamed jasmine rice, soft boiled eggs, and another spicy dish. And that was how our cozy evening after work began.