Ribolitta soup (Italian)
with Savoy Cabbage and Cannellini Beans
A hearty Italian soup that is low in fat but full of flavour, especially if you make it a day ahead. Takes about thirty minutes to prepare and cook
3 cloves garlic crushed
1 onion, finely chopped
4 small carrots finely sliced
2 x 410g cans cannellini Beans, rinsed and drained
500ml vegetable Stock
100 ml water
200g Savoy cabbage, quartered, cored and shredded
200g Smoked Dry Cure back bacon*
25g fresh basil, torn
˝ tbsp olive oil
Preheat the grill (I think this is an American ‘broiler’?) to high. In a large, lidded pan, gently heat the oil and add the garlic, onion, and carrots. Cover and cook for 5 minutes until starting to soften, stirring occasionally.
Remove the lid and add the beans, stock and 100ml boiling water and bring to a simmer, stirring occasionally. Add the cabbage and cook for a further 5 minutes until the cabbage is tender.
Place the bacon under the grill on a rack and cook for 4-5 minutes, turning once, until crisp. Leave to cool slightly then tear into pieces and stir into the soup.
Spoon into individual bowls, scatter with the basil and serve with a good grind of black pepper and Grissini breadsticks or warmed ciabatta bread.
*I’ve made this soup for vegetarians by omitting the bacon and adding some grated Castelli (Italian hard cheese) just before serving.