The best souvenirs I take home on my travels are recipes. Whether for a full meal or just a cocktail, a recipe is something that you can share with others and time and time again. This Tuscan recipe I had the opportunity to learn, share, and enjoy last fall in a small town outside of Florence called Figline Valdarno. Ribollita (ree-bo-lita) is a hardy stew perfect for chilly temperatures. It is easy to prepare and healthy. Not unlike other soups, chilis, or stews, it takes time for all of the flavors to mix and mingle well. Enjoy a glass or two of Chianti while you wait!
Ready to make a Tuscan stew or better said reap the benefits and mangia, mangia, mangia Ribollita?
- Bread (unsalted Tuscan bread is the best or a day-old baquette)
- 4 Medium Potatoes
- Beans (2 large cans or 1 large bag of cannellini beans)
- 4 Carrots
- 1 Kale
- 1 Cabbage
- 2 Beet
- 4 Onion
- 1 Celery
- 2 Zucchini
- Extra virgin olive oil
- 3-4 cups of chicken or vegetable stock
- 3 cloves garlic
- Large sprig of rosemary
- Stewed tomatoes
- 4 oz. pancetta (can omit for a veggie option)
Steps to prepare Ribollita:
- Cut all of the veggies into similar sized cubes
- Fry the onion lightly in olive oil in a large stew pot. (If using pancetta, add now.)
- After the onion is translucent, add all other ingredients, minus the bread and beans.
- While the vegetables are cooking, cook or open the cans of beans.
- Take half of the beans and make them into a puree. This will be the rue of the stew.
- Add both types of beans to the mixture.
- Although the mixture to cook for 2-3 hours.
- Finally, dice 2 cups of the bread, toast, and add to mixture 10-minutes prior to serving.
If you enjoy collecting souvenirs like these, I have included some of my favorite recipes from my adventures in Spain as well as Patagonia in my book, With New Eyes. Learn more and get a copy here.
Here’s to more good times and good stories!