Tuscan Ribollita Soup




This hearty, classic, Tuscan vegetable stew was originally a way to use up leftover bread and vegetable soup!  Ribollita means “reboiled” due to the addition of cubed bread to thicken the broth.  Traditionally made with just a Parmesan rind, we add a hefty dose of imported Pecorino for flavor plus serve ours topped with a deliciously cheesy toast for dipping.  It’s northern Italian comfort food at its best and also great for vegetarians.

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1 loaf Tuscan or Italian bread
3 TB olive oil, additional for garnish
1 large onion, diced
2 medium carrots, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
6 cloves garlic, sliced
1/4 tsp hot pepper flakes
1 large sprig rosemary
1 large sprig thyme
1 28oz can San Marzano tomatoes, drained & juices reserved
optional: Pecorino or Parmesan rind for simmering
6 cups vegetable or chicken broth
2 15oz cans cannelloni beans, drained
2 bunches Tuscan (Lacinato) or curly kale, leaves torn into large pieces
1/2 cup grated Pecorino Romano or Parmesan cheese, additional for garnish
8 slices imported Provolone Cheese


Cut bread into 8 slices for toasts. Tear remaining bread into 2 cups of chunks. Reserve any leftover bread for another use.
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Heat olive oil over medium heat in a large soup pot or Dutch oven. Add onion, carrot, celery, garlic, and 1 tsp kosher salt. Cook, stirring often, for 15 minutes or until vegetables are soft. Add pepper flakes, rosemary, thyme, and whole strained tomatoes. Cook for 10 minutes, stirring frequently and breaking up tomatoes with a spoon, until tomatoes darken and caramelize.
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Add reserved tomato juices, choice of broth, beans, kale, optional cheese rind, and bread cubes. Increase heat and simmer for an additional 15 minutes or until kale is tender and bread is breaking down to thicken soup. Stir in grated cheese and simmer 1 minute longer.
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While soup simmers arrange sliced bread on a baking sheet and top with imported Provolone. Place under the broiler for 4-5 minutes or until bread is toasted and cheese is bubbly and brown.
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Season soup to taste with salt and pepper and serve each bowl drizzled with olive oil and garnished with additional grated cheese and Provolone toast for dipping.
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Options: You can also swap in other leafy greens like Swiss chard and add in diced potato, sliced cabbage, or other hearty vegetables you’d like!
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