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Heat the oil in a large soup pot over medium heat. Add the onions and carrots and saute for about 5 minutes or until the onions are just starting to colour. Use a bit of water instead of the oil to keep the recipe oil-free.
Add the cabbage, garlic and ground round. Continue sauteing for another 5 minutes, stirring frequently.
Add the tomato paste, stock, diced tomatoes, sugar, soy sauce, paprika, oregano, thyme, bay leaves, salt and pepper, then stir well and bring to a boil.
Once boiling add the rice, stir really well, then cover with a lid, reduce the heat and let it gently simmer until the rice is cooked. Lift the lid and stir occasionally, but cover it again as soon as you have finished. The rice will take between 20 and 25 minutes to become tender.
Add more stock or a bit of water to thin if required, although the soup is best when nice and thick like stew. Check the seasoning adding more as necessary, then serve.