Place the chicken pieces in a large thick-bottomed pot. Pour in enough water to cover. Set over medium heat and bring to the boil. Remove scum as it rises.
With a sharp pointed knife, pierce the garlic in several places.
Add the onion, pierced garlic, peppercorns, bay leaf and salt to the pot. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes. Taste occasionally and add more salt, as needed.
Meanwhile, cut the cabbage into halves then cut each half into four wedges. Peel the potatoes and cut into wedges as well.
Add the potatoes and cabbage to the chicken. Simmer for another 10 to 15 minutes. The potatoes will soak up a lot of the saltiness in the broth so taste one last time before serving.