Hearty Cabbage and Potato Stew with Cheese Crostini
Rinse and trim the cabbage and cut into large pieces. Peel the potatoes, carrots and salsify, rinse and cut into chunks. Peel the onion. Rinse and trim the celery, cut lengthwise into thin strips and tie together into bundles with kitchen twine. Pour the beans into a sieve, rinse in cold water and drain. Peel the garlic.
Heat 4 tablespoons of olive oil in a large saucepan. Fry the bacon until crispy. Drain and remove to a paper towel. Add the onions to the pan and fry. Press the garlic into the pan. Rinse the thyme and strip the leaves from the stems. Add the bay leaves and thyme to the onions and sauté for a few seconds. Stir in the prepared vegetables and the beans, cook briefly, then pour in the broth. Season with salt and pepper. Cover and cook for 45 minutes.
Cut the baguette into slices. Place on a baking sheet and drizzle with the remaining olive oil. Sprinkle cheese on top and melt briefly under the oven's broiler, watching carefully.
Rinse the parsley, shake dry and chop coarsely. Season the vegetable stew to taste. Stir in the bacon and parsley. Serve the soup in bowls alongside the cheese crostini.