Monday, 27 January 2014

Tuscany Style Ribollita

In the afternoon the skies darkened, the temperature dropped and the rain set in. It was time to cosy down with a bowl of something hot, healthy and rustic. Sometime ago one of my neighbours made this fabulous dish for me and I have been cooking it ever since for the Grumpy Greek and I.  I am a big fan of organic produce, this ensures the vegetables are seasonal allowing the flavours to speak for themselves.

So here goes - this is my version of that wonderful Tuscany dish 'Ribollita'.

For the Ribollita
200 ml olive oil
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves of garlic, roughly chopped
2 sticks celery, roughly chopped
2 large carrots, roughly chopped
2 med courgettes, roughly chopped
1 tin chopped tomatoes
2 tins cannellini beans
1 small packet cherry tomatoes of your choice, I used a mixed pack of red & yellow
1/4 size piece of a celeriac (optional)
1 med fennel bulb, quartered
1 med Cavolo Nero (black cabbage)
1/2 med Savoy cabbage
400 g  potatoes, I used Anya potatoes boil first then cut into large chucks
500 ml vegetable stock
1 level desert spoon sugar
salt & pepper to taste
freshly grated pecorino cheese or a mature cheddar will also do the trick
garnish with chopped flat leaf parsley (optional)

Garlic Bread
 1 french stick
1/3 packet of softened butter
dash of olive oil
1 crushed clove of garlic
Mix butter, olive oil & garlic together well with a fork.
Slice the French stick diagonally in approx. 6 cm pieces but leave the loaf intact by not cutting right to the bottom.  Wrap loaf in tin foil.

Preheat the oven to 200°, put your potatoes on to boil for 20 minutes.  

On a baking tray toss the fennel and celeriac in some olive oil and season with salt and pepper, roast for 10 minutes   Then add the courgettes and tomatoes to the baking tray and cook for a further 10 minutes remove to cool down. 

Whilst the courgettes and tomatoes are roasting.  Heat the olive oil in a large heavy based pan, add the onions and cook gently until they are soft. Add the celery, carrots, garlic and season. Cook these gently for 10 to 15 minutes over a low heat until it starts to turn golden, occasionally stirring.

Add the tin of tomatoes, vegetable stock, sugar and simmer gently for five minutes. In a bowl mash one tin of cannellini beans and add to the saucepan, also add potatoes, Savoy, Cavolo Nero cabbage and remaining tin of whole cannellini beans, give it a good stir 

Finally add all your roasted vegetables (including those fabulous juices) to the pot and stir in gently

Pop your garlic bread in the oven for roughly 10 to 12 minutes when you open the foil it should be golden and crispy to the touch, if not just lightly open the foil and return to the oven for a further five minutes. 

Serve in large bowls, topped with the coarsely grated cheese, parsley and two chunks of 
garlic bread.  ENJOY x

Dom's rustic bread

As my dear friend Dom of Belleau kitchen was with us on Saturday, there was no need to buy a French stick.  Whilst I was whipping up my Tuscany delight, Dom made this incredible bread which he laced with the garlic butter.

My Grumpy Greek is forever asking why I always make more food than is necessary? Well, the answer is my darling - It's always great to have Lazy Leftovers for lunch. Sunday was a lazy day and I had almost a portion of Ribolitta still in the pot, so I added 1/2 a kettle of boiling water, 1 vegetable stock cube, simmered it for 10 mins, blitzed it, served soup with a spoonful of creme fraiche. Dom was kind enough to make us an extra loaf, which I reheated and served with the soup . Yummy.

Lazy Leftovers


  1. this looks so yummy!... love the soup too... I had leftovers today for my lunch and it was gorgeous!

  2. Can't wait to cook with you again on Wednesday Dom

  3. That looks fantastic, both bread and soup, and you've got to love a meal that matches the kitchen haven't you :-)

    1. Hi Sue thanks very much for your comment. OMG, your right about matching the kitchen, come to think of it now most of my food does. x

  4. Who doesn't love a bit of a lazy leftover! How nice that you and Dom cook together, ribollita and bread both sound fab.

    1. Hi Caroline Your right, there's nothing like a lazy leftover. And yes, I love, love, love cooking and falling around the kitchen laughing with my darling friend Dom. Happy Days. x

  5. Hello! Just wanted to let you know that your Ribollita recipe features over at BritMums this month in the Italian Food Round up! :)