Leek, Potato and Cannellini Beans Soup (Zuppa di Porri, Patate e Cannellini)

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As the winter season approaches here in Sydney, I feel a fervent yearning for heart-warming food, the kind that will nourish you body and will comfort your soul as you perfume the house with scented candles, dim the lights and snuggle under a blanket to catch your favourite show or, in my case, read a cookery book. I am more of a summer person, and yet I find myself happily surrendering to the inevitable winter chills and shorter days as I head to the stove to make scalding hot soups, ready to be enriched with seasonal goods.

INGREDIENTS, serves 4

1 leek, white part only, thinly sliced and well washed

2 medium potatoes, peeled and cubed

1 celery stick, sliced

1 garlic clove, finely chopped

3 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil

1 small handful of smoked speck or pancetta (or chorizo), cut into cubes, omit for a vegetarian/vegan option

1 tin of cannellini beans, well drained and rinsed

3/4 cup of baby pasta (ditalini, orzo, risoni…)

salt and pepper to taste

chillies and celery leaves to serve, optional

HOW TO

1. Heat up the oil in a medium saucepan, drop in the leeks and cook over medium-low heat for 8-10 minutes or until soft.

2. Add the potatoes and celery along with the garlic  and pancetta and cook over medium heat for 3-5 minutes.

3. Add the beans and cover with water. Simmer for 20-25 minutes or until the vegetables are soft.

4. Taste for salt and adjust accordingly.

5. Puree 1/3 of the soup in a food processor or blender then add it back to the pot. Add the baby pasta and cook in the soup until al dente (you may need to add a little water to the pot, just enough to make sure the pasta is well covered)

6. Serve drizzled with evoo, back pepper and celery leaves and some freshly chopped chillies for a little extra kick.

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13 thoughts on “Leek, Potato and Cannellini Beans Soup (Zuppa di Porri, Patate e Cannellini)

  1. You’re right about the season change making our food choices for us! I felt compelled to make osso bucco on the weekend. And since then I’ve been dreaming about a winter soup – thanks Silvia!

  2. I’m making osso bucco now, will now be doing the leek and potatoe soup on the weekend too, love the thought of adding beans too!

  3. Hi Siliva. I am making this right now. It’s raining outside and the soup smells wonderful – perfect for a night like this. But have a query. When do you add the pasta? Should it be about halfway through the vegetable cooking time, or do you mean 3/4 cup of cooked pasta?
    Thanks so much,
    Rachel

    • Rachel, I am just making the soup and was about to ask the same question as pasta/risoni would get pureed if added too early. Perhaps it is added after you’ve returned the puree soup to the mix. Think I will just leave it out…..

      • Yes, puree some of the soup, add it to the pot and then you cook the baby pasta in it. You may need to add a little extra water, just to make sure the baby pasta is well covered. Hope this helps! Silvia

      • Thanks Silvia. It was really delicious – we had it with warm no-knead bread, and it was hard to stop eating! We’ll definitely make it again. Lovely recipe.

  4. Soup was delicious and I ended up adding the baby pasta in the correct place! I did almost forget the cannelini beans still in fridge, but photo of soup reminded me. Great recipe, thanks.

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