Dubrovnik green menestra

There are three kinds of green menestra (cabbage and smoked meat stew).

The present City recipe, the Župska and the Primorska Green Menestra.
– Dalmatian prosciutto (smoked ham) 0,80 kg
– smoked lamb (kaštradina) 0,60 kg
– bacon (home-smoked) 0,50 kg
– sausages (home-made) 0,60 kg
– cabbage (green-raštanj) 0,80 kg
– kale (verza) 0,50 kg
– cabbage (white,head) 0,65 kg
– potatoes 0,75 kg
– oil (olive) 0,15 l
– salt 0,02 kg

Wash the prosciutto (koljenica) and the smoked lamb in warm water and scrap if needed (smoked surface). Put in lukewarm water and cook. After a set time, add and cook the sausages and bacon. The softer pieces of cooked meat are removed so they remain intact.

Wash the green cabbage (raštanj). The washed kale and head of white cabbage are cut in thick slabs. Each vegetable is blanched for a short time, removed and drained. The potatoes are cleaned, washed, cut in four and cooked in the strained stock from the cooked meat. Salt to taste. When the stock boils, add olive oil, and then add all the blanched vegetables. Do not overcook the vegetables.

Remove the cooked meat from the bones, and cut into serving pieces. Place the cut meat over the vegetables and cook all together for a short while on low heat. Remove from heat and keep covered for one half hour.

Pile up the vegetables in a serving dish, encircle with all the meat. Each guest should be served the vegetables together with a portion of each variety of meat. Stock is poured over the dish prior to serving.

Various kinds of smoked pork can be used to prepare this dish, ie. smoked neck, rib, shoulder, prosciutto, etc.
In late spring or early summer, the vegetables could include broad and spring beans.
In the original recipe, the vegetables do not have to be blanched, but then the vegetables might not have the nice green color of blanched vegetables. Also, some of the bitterness found in the vegetables disappears with blanching.
The greed menestra is not prepared for a small group of people. The dish must be prepared rapidly and on high heat, so as to preserve the vegetables natural color, particularly vegetables that are green.