This is a soup that requires some time but is so delicious and nutritious it’s well worth the effort. Just the thing for a cold day, it’s a very hearty soup and a meal in itself.
Cooking time: 45 minutes
What you'll need
Heavy based saucepan
- 500g Savoy cabbage or cavolo nero
- 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 2 red onions, finely chopped
- 1 carrot, finely chopped
- 1 head of celery, finely chopped
- 1 red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
- 1 tin borlotti beans, drain and rinse
- 1 tin plum tomatoes
- 500ml -1 litre water
- Olive oil
- Salt and pepper
- Warm a little olive oil in a large pan, add the chopped onion, celery, carrot, garlic, and chili, season with salt and pepper, and cook gently until soft.
- Meanwhile, bring a large pan of water to the boil, add a pinch of salt.
- Wash the cabbage and remove the stalks, if using savoy shred the leaves, cook the cabbage in the boiling water for 4-5 minutes until just cooked. Drain, keeping the water, and chop roughly.
- If using cavolo nero, cook until tender, strain, and chop finely.
- When the vegetables are soft add the tomatoes and cook another 15 minutes, then add the beans and 500ml of water and simmer for another 15 minutes, then add the cabbage and more water if necessary.
- Taste to check the seasoning and serve with a drizzle of good oil and freshly grated parmesan on top.
You can use cannellini beans instead or chickpeas. These are all great sources of protein and add body to the soup. Cavolo Nero works best if you can get it and it is also delicious without any greens or just add a handful of spinach at the very end.