Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Minestra di Pasta e Verdure alla Romana

The title translates to Roman Soup with Pasta and Vegetables. We here at home refer to it as minestrone soup; easier to remember.

This is one of my all-time favorite soups to make for winter. Though it is only fall, beautiful pleasant afternoons have lead to cool evenings once the sun goes down,  and I could not wait. This soup always satisfys and I have been craving something healthy, after not so healthy eating this week.

I usually make this with salad macaroni rather than the elbow shaped pasta - it makes for a prettier presentation.

The recipe comes from the book The Classic Pasta Cookbook by Giuliano Hazan. His recipes are easy to prepare and so far have not disappointed.

Success meter (1-3): 3+

Wholesome goodness.

Look at all those leafy greens.
Chard, kale, butter lettuce, and cabbage.

I have always bought pancetta from the deli in the past.
I did not know I had a choice of cured or uncured.
Not sure what I have bought previously.

This is "salad macaroni" which I prefer to use in this soup,
and realized only as I was writing this that I had it in
the pantry.

The aromatics: onion, celery, carrot, rosemary, (and pancetta).

Throw your greens in after sautéing your aromatics.

Cook down..

Add broth.

The best soup ever!

Minestra di Pasta e Verdure alla Romano

2 Tbl. butter (I omitted)
3 Tbl. extra-virgin olive oil
¼ cup finely chopped diced onion
2 Tbl. finely diced pancetta
¼ cup finely diced peeled carrot
¼ cup finely diced celery
½ tsp. fresh rosemary or ¼ tsp. dried, finely chopped
1 ½ cups roughly chopped Swiss chard or spinach leaves
1 cup roughly chopped mustard green leaves or kale
1 ½ cups roughly chopped butter lettuce leaves
2 cups finely shredded savoy cabbage leaves
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
5 cups homemade meat broth or 1 beef bouillon cube dissolved in 5 cups water
6 oz. tubetti, ditali or, cavatappi
¼ cup freshly grated Parmigiano-reggiano cheese

1.       Put the butter, one third of the olive oil, and all the onion in a large, heavy-bottomed stockpot over a medium-low heat.
2.       When the onion has softened and turned a rich golden color; stir in the pancetta and continue cooking until it is lightly browned but not crisp.
3.       Add the carrot, celery, and rosemary and sauté until they are lightly browned.
4.       Drop in all the green and season with salt and black pepper. Once the leaves have wilted, continue sautéing for 2 minutes more, then pour in the broth. When the broth begins to boil, turn the heat down to low and cover the pot. Cook for 1 hour.
5.       Raise the heat to medium-high. When the soup begins to boil again, drip in the pasta and cover the pot. When the pasta is al dente, pour the soup into bowls. Drizzle the remaining olive oil (I omitted) over each serving and sprinkle each with the grated cheese. Serve at once.

Note:  This is so good I double the recipe.

The Classic Pasta Cookbook/Giuliano Hazan

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