The famous Tuscan soup, Ribollita, is a classic example of delicious cucina povera (peasant cooking). The name literally means ‘reboiled’ as it was created to use up leftover beans and vegetables cooked for Friday, the fast day when no meat was eaten. On Saturday, they were turned into a hearty soup with stale bread added to make it more filling. The three essential Ingredients are cavolo nero (Tuscan cabbage), beans (usually cannellini though borlotti are sometimes used) and stale bread. Apart from that, recipes vary widely, Savoy cabbage is common and other seasonal vegetables are often included; sometimes it’s finished in the oven, sometimes just in the soup pot, and it’s always topped with a good drizzle of olive oil. Complete your virtual trip to Italy by enjoying a Tuscan varietal, such as sangiovese, with it; the one from Farnese Fantini works a treat and is great value.
Serves 6 as a starter
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