Mrs. Jackson Cooks

Life through food

Italian chunky vegetable soup: Ribollita

on January 7, 2011

Continuing with using up the vegetables in the fridge and being healthy and thrifty, I made more soup for lunches.   The downside to all this vegetable soup making is that I’m now out of vegetables (apart from onions and potatoes)!  But at least they all get eaten.

I found this recipe in my Italian recipes cookbook, which I love.  But unfortunately they won’t let me reproduce any recipes.  However, you are in luck because I didn’t have half the ingredients for this soup so I adapted it, therefore, it’s now my version of Ribollita and not theirs at all!  But, rest assured, it’s still very tasty.  If I ever get round to making the original, I’ll let you know how they compare.  I’ll also give you notes on what I changed from the original, so if you want to try and reproduce the original you can, but in such a way that I won’t get in trouble with the copyright police!

And this is another vege one, and if there is such a thing as vegan pesto, then it’s a vegan one too!  Plus it’s gluten, lactose and anything else, free too.  Basically, it won’t hurt a fly, but it’s full of energy and colour and warmth – just what you need on a miserable January day.   It”s another chunky soup so no wizzing up with electrical equipment.  All you need is a large saucepan.

Mrs Jackson’s Italian Ribollita soup

Serves 3-4

1 tbsp oil (I used olive)

1 onion, finely chopped

2 garlic cloves, crushed

1 small squash, peeled, deseeded and chopped into small chunks (original recipe had carrots and celery instead)

1 tsp fennel seeds (or a fresh fennel bulb if you have it)

2 corgettes, finely sliced on the diagonal (don’t ask me why but they taste better diagonally!)

200ml passata (pureed tomatoes, or a tin of tomatoes which was in the original)

700ml vegetable stock

1 tbsp pesto (I used red as that’s what I had but I think any kind will do)

1 tin of cannellini beans (or haricot or borlotti, which were in the original)

salt and pepper

bunch of curly kale, chopped (or spinach or other greens)

  1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan on a low heat, and add the onion, garlic, squash and fennel seeds, frying until softened but not coloured.
  2. Then add the corgettes and fry for a further few minutes until these soften.
  3. Next add the stock, passata, pesto and beans.  Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer, cover and leave for about 20 minutes to cook.
  4. Check the soup occasionally to make sure it’s not sticking to the bottom or needs more water.
  5. Next add the curly kale to the soup, replace the lid and allow to wilt.  You may need to do this in batches.  Alternatively, if you’re serving right away (and not preparing for lunches), wilt the kale in a frying pan with a bit of oil.  Then put in the bottom of the bowls.
  6. Check the soup for seasoning, add as needed and pour over the kale.
  7. Serve with garlic bread or crostini and a little parmesan sprinkled on top and drift away on memories of holidays in Italy.
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