Bor­lotti, pars­ley and bread soup

The Guardian - Feast - - News -

Prep 20 min Cook 1 hr 30 min Serves 6-8

6 tbsp olive oil 3

red onions, peeled and

finely chopped

5 gar­lic cloves, peeled and finely chopped

3 car­rots, roughly chopped

2 heads cel­ery, outer branches re­moved, hearts roughly chopped

1 bunch pars­ley leaves, roughly chopped

5 tbsp tinned chopped toma­toes

1 bunch cavolo nero, chopped

500g cooked bor­lotti beans, cook­ing liquor re­served

¾ loaf stale white bread or cia­batta, crust re­moved, cut into 2.5cm thick wedges Plenty of good olive oil 600ml boil­ing wa­ter Salt and black pep­per

In a large heavy-based pot, fry the onions, gar­lic, car­rots, cel­ery and pars­ley un­cov­ered in the olive oil for about one hour over a low heat.

When these are en­tirely soft, add the toma­toes and con­tinue to cook for a fur­ther 15 min­utes. Stir in the cavolo nero and set aside.

Pour half the beans with half their cook­ing liq­uid into a food pro­ces­sor. Pulse un­til smooth, then add to the veg­eta­bles. Strain the other half of the beans and add them to the soup. Lay the bread gen­tly on top of the soup to form a sort of lid, then cover with plenty of olive oil. Pour the boil­ing wa­ter over the bread and leave the soup to cook very gen­tly for 10 min­utes, then leave to sit off the heat for a fur­ther 10 min­utes. The bread should be com­pletely soft.

Gen­tly break up the bread lid and fold it into the rest of the soup. Sea­son if need be, and serve with some more olive oil on top – the soup should be thick enough that you can stand up a spoon in it. From The Kitchen Or­chard by Natalia Conroy (Ebury)

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