In a slow cooker or Dutch oven, combine cabbage, potatoes, and carrots. Top with smoked sausage. Sprinkle basil, thyme, and pepper over smoked sausage. Pour chicken broth over all and add bay leaf. Cover and cook on low heat setting for 7-9 hours or high heat for 3-4 hours. To serve, remove bay leaf, ladle into bowls and top with rustic homemade croutons.
Rustic Homemade Croutons: Stale bread of any kind cut into large cubes and tossed with olive oil, fresh minced garlic and your favorite herbs. Place on a foil lined baking sheet (for easy clean up) and bake in a 350 degrees oven until lightly browned.