Adriana’s Minestrone di Verdure

There are a great many variations on minestrone, and Adriana’s is extraordinarily creamy, thanks to a healthy number of potatoes. She says you can use short pasta such as ditalini in the dish, but that she prefers croutons instead, because they provide a pleasant texture contrast. To serve 15 (or fewer in fewer meals than you might think; expect people to ask for seconds):

  • 3 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 15 medium-sized potatoes, peeled and chopped
  • The leafy fronds from three celery stalks, chopped
  • A small bunch parsley
  • A handful of dried beans (3/4 cup to a cup)
  • A handful of lentils (same volume)
  • 2 medium onions, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 leeks, white part only, chopped
  • 1/2 of a bulb of fennel
  • 3 leaves fresh spinach
  • 3 leaves fresh beet greens
  • A chunk of squash, peeled
  • The rinds from a wedge of Parmigiano or Grana Padana, if you have them
  • A 6-ounce (150 g) slice of cooked ham
  • A 6-ounce (150 g) slice of speck (smoked prosciutto, which is typical of Northeastern Italy)
  • Salt & Pepper to taste
  • Croutons
  • Extra Virgin Olive oil
  • Freshly grated Parmigiano

Set the beans to simmer in a pot of lightly salted water until they are tender.

Combine all the remaining ingredients except the croutons, and simmer them in a pot with abundant water for 3-4 hours. Blend the soup, so as to make it creamy. Add the beans, and if the soup is too thick some of the bean broth (taste it to make sure it’s not overly salty first). Check seasoning, heat the soup to a boil, and serve it with croutons, grated cheese, and extra virgin olive oil for those who want it.

The rest of the meal this was served in.

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Categories: Minestroni & Zuppe, Recipes from the Veneto, Cucina Veneta

Author:Cosa Bolle in Pentola

Italy boasts an astonishing number of varietals, denominations, and wines, and tremendous changes are sweeping the land. New wines are being created, new DOCs are being introduced, and the existing denominations are overhauling their regulations both to reflect the practices adopted by their member wineries and to favor improvements in quality. Even the most staid and stolid region can flower seemingly overnight, emerging with exciting new wines and wineries that require rewriting the enological maps and rethinking one's positions. And, of course, recipes too, because cuisine and wine are closely intertwined and it's difficult to imagine one without the other.

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