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Italian Ribollita Soup

This “peasant” soup is fantastic in any season. Ribollita in Italian means “reboiled”. Very flavorful and simple to make.

This is a vegetarian version of Ribollita. However, if you’d prefer, it can be made a bit smoky and not vegetarian with the addition of crisped pancetta or sliced Italian sausage.

To make it in a more traditional Tuscan manner, place some grilled bread slices (ciabatta is a good choice) on the bottom of each soup bowl, then add the soup, finishing with freshly chopped Italian parsley and a grating of Parmesan cheese.

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup good olive oil, plus extra for serving
  • 2 large yellow onions, cut into 1/2 inch dice
  • 3 carrots, peeled, halved length-wise and cut into 1/2 inch slices
  • 3 stalks celery, trimmed and sliced into 1/2 inch cross slices
  • 1 bulb fennel, trimmed, halved, and cut into 1/2 inch cross slices
  • 1 package of sliced button mushrooms
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 tablespoon Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 2 cans (15.5 oz.) white beans, Great Northern or cannellini
  • 4 cloves garlic, smashed and cut in-half
  • 2 dried bay leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon black peppercorns
  • 4 cups vegetable stock
  • 2 slices per serving of grilled ciabatta (optional)
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan, for serving
  • Freshly chopped Italian flat-leaf parsley leaves for garnish

Directions

  1. Heat the oil in a large stockpot over medium-high heat. Add the onions, carrots, celery, fennel, mushrooms and crushed red pepper. Season with kosher salt and a good quantity of freshly ground pepper.
  2. Continue to cook over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until the onions are translucent and the other vegetables are tender.
  3. Drain and rinse the beans. Add the beans into the stockpot.
  4. Add the stock, bay leaves, peppercorns, and garlic, stirring to incorporate. Bring the soup to a boil. Lower the heat until the soup is just at a simmer  Cover the pot and allow to simmer for approximately 45 minutes. Note: At this point, all the ingredients can be put into a slow cooker. Cook on low for 3 hours.
  5. Taste for seasoning and adjust if necessary.
  6. If using the bread, place the grilled slices into each bowl, ladle the soup on top. Add freshly grated Parmesan to taste and garnish with freshly chopped parsley.
  7. Drizzle some extra virgin olive oil on top, and serve.

Serves 6 – 8

The “Holy Trinity” – – the base of a good soup (onions, celery, and carrots)

The best one can find during the season – – beautiful bell peppers

Ribollita bubbling away

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