Casa Fin | Ricette - Minestrone (affectionately known as Swamp Surprise)

 Recipe Title
arrow Minestrone (affectionately known as Swamp Surprise) - Reet’s version

 Recipe Author arrow Rita Fin
 The Story Behind The Recipe arrow Family story - When we were growing up and we came home from school we could smell this a mile off and would groan when we realised we were having “swamp” for dinner! Nowadays we love Minestrone, but as kids we had yet to acquire the taste of this Italian staple.

The ultimate swamp surprise in the early 1970’s was put through a sieve – “PASSATA” – so that the final colour was GRAY – you could not distinguish the individual ingredients in any way, shape or form. Then the cooked pasta was added. And tossed through. Say no more. To a kid that was DIZGOSTING (as Dad would say). Nowadays, the longer it sits, with flavours melding, the better!

 The Recipe's Country of Origin
arrow Italia
 Meal Type arrow Soup
 Preparation Time arrow c. 30 mins
 Cooking Time arrow Up to 2 hours
 Oven Temperature arrow N/A
 Number of Servings arrow Has to be for Fin family of 10 at least!
arrow 1. 3 Tbs olive oil or more
2. 250g pancetta (or smoked speck), in small cubes
3. 1 large onion, finely diced
4. 3 carrots, finely chopped/cubed
5. 2 celery sticks finely sliced
6. 1 small glass white wine
7. 6 cups of homemade chicken or beef stock (you could use ready made broth ….but it’s not the same!)
8. 1 x 400g can Italian diced Roma tomatoes
9. 2 Tbs tomato paste
10. Sea salt & pepper
11. Any firmish vegetables you have in the fridge  – potatoes, parsnip, broccoli, zucchini etc. The best thing about this soup is that you can use any veges that have “past their use by date” and chuck them in
12. 1 cup shell pasta , or any short pasta, pastina, rice etc
13. 2 cups finely shredded cabbage (pref Savoy)
14. 1 cup frozen peas
15. 2 x 400g can rinsed cannellini or borlotti beans
16. Chopped parsley, extra olive oil, pepper, grated parmesan and crusty bread, to serve
 Ingredients Source arrow N/A
 Cooking Instructions arrow 1. Heat the olive oil in large saucepan. Lightly fry 250g pancetta, onion, carrot, celery . Stir and cook for 3-4 minutes or until onion is soft.
2. Add the wine and cook 1 minute
3. Add the stock, 1 x 400g can Italian diced Roma tomatoes, 2 tbs tomato paste and sea salt and pepper. Bring to the boil.
4. Add the hardest vegetables first, simmer, cover for 20 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Stir occasionally.
5. Add quicker cooking vegetables and time according to how long they will take to cook without becoming too mushy.
6. Add 1 cup small shell pasta, 1 cup finely shredded cabbage, 1/2 cup frozen peas, chopped. Boil uncovered for 5-8 mins.
7. Stir through 2 x 400g can rinsed cannellini beans.
8. Drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle parsley, add pepper, sprinkle with freshly grated parmesan and serve with crusty bread.

 Serving Suggestions arrow Optional – can be mixed in a blender to create a puree, then the cooked pasta and step 7 added later. See family history.

Buon appetito!