Yorkshire's Independent Restaurant Guide


I love reading new cookery books and I’m enjoying Angela Hartnett’s A Taste of Home: 200 Quick and Easy Recipes, but I rarely see a recipe and shop especially for it. More often than not, I see what I’ve got in the cupboard and then find a recipe to fit.  This means I rarely have  all the ingredients for a recipe so I usually have to make substitutions.

For this Ribollita, I had plenty of vegetables and a beautifully grassy bottle of Mother’s Garden olive oil but substituted white onions for red, kale for cavolo nero and mini pasta for cannellini beans.  ‘Don’t be put off by the long list of vegetables,’ says Ange, indeed. What you will get, is a heartwarming winter soup with a welcome chilli kick. Enjoy.

1tbsp olive oil
2 small red onions roughly chopped
2 carrots roughly chopped
3 sticks of celery, trimmed and chopped
3 garlic cloves, chopped
pinch of ground fennel seeds
pinch of dried red chilli
1 bay leaf
500ml vegetable or chicken stock. (Angela has a recipe for stock. I used Marigold powdered stock)
1 small potato chopped
1 x 400g can of cannellini beans, drained
1 x 400g can of good quality plum tomatoes
1 tomato, squashed
310g cavolo nero, leaves and stalks finely sliced
2 large handfuls of good quality stale bread torn into chunks
drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil, the best you can find for serving
sea salt and freshly ground pepper

Serves 4


Heat the olive oil in a large pan and saute the onions, carrots, celery and garlic. Add the fennel seeds, chilli and bay leaf, then pour in the stock. Add the potato and bring to a simmer and cook until the vegetables are just done.

Add the beans, canned tomatoes, fresh tomato and cavalo nero and bring back to the boil. Check the seasoning.

Put some of the bread into the bottom of each bowl, pour in the soup and drizzle with a little extra virgin olive oil before serving.