Ribolita reconstructed

January  7, 2015
0 Ratings
  • Serves 10-12
Author Notes

For my version of ribollita, instead of cooking the bread with the soup, I like to add a slice of toasted bread smeared with a bit of pesto and float it on top of the soup just before serving. A purist would tell you that this is definitely not ribollita, which calls for the bread to be cooked along with the vegetables. This recipe was originally published on my website

I do some other non-traditional things. I like to add tomatoes, that were certainly not available in Italy in the Middle ages, and four kinds of greens: Lacinato kale, Swiss chard, rapini and spinach. If I can find them I use cannellini beans, but great northern beans will do as well. I also use a chunk of pancetta as a tribute to the roast-soaked bread originally used to make ribollita, and just because everything is better with pancetta. —Kim at Something New For Dinner

What You'll Need
  • Soup ingredients
  • 1/4 pound pancetta, cut into 1/4" cubes
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 red onion
  • 2 carrots
  • 2 celery stalks
  • 1/2 pound yukon gold potatoes, unpeeled and cut into 1/4" dice
  • 1.5 cups chopped canned tomatoes
  • 1 parmigiano reggiano rind
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 10 cups mixed greens ( lacinto kale, swiss chard, rapini, spinach)
  • 2 cups cannellini or great white beans
  • Pesto smeared croutons
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 1/4 cup pinenuts, toasted
  • 1 handful stemmed basil leaves (about 2 ounces)
  • 1 handful stemmed spinach leaves (about 2 ounces)
  • 1 zest from 1 lemaon
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 5 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pinch crushed red pepper flakes
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • pepper to taste
  1. Soup ingredients
  2. In the largest soup pot you have, cook pancetta cubes until they begin to brown. Scoop them out of the pan and onto a paper towel lined plate. Set aside. Reserve the fat from the pancetta in the pot.
  3. In a food processor, finely chop the garlic cloves. Add the onion and pulse until coarsely chopped. Add the garlic and onion mixture to the pot with the pancetta fat and cook until soft over medium heat for 10 minutes. Depending on how fatty your pancetta is, you may need to add a bit of olive oil.
  4. In the food processor, coarsely chop the carrot and celery. Add carrots and celery to the onion and garlic mixture and saute for another 10 minutes. Add diced potatoes and stir to mix in.
  5. Add chopped tomatoes, chicken stock, parmigiano reggiano rind, dried thyme, dried oregano, crushed red pepper flakes. Season with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and cook another 10 minutes.
  6. Stir in the mixed greens and cannellini beans and cook on medium heat for another 10 minutes.
  7. Serve in individual bowls topped with a pesto smeared crouton.
  1. Pesto smeared croutons
  2. In a food processor, whirl the garlic until finely minced. Add the remaining ingredients and whirl until well combined. Taste and adjust seasonings.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Jennifer Shank Mathews
    Jennifer Shank Mathews
  • Nancy Cusick Best
    Nancy Cusick Best
  • Cameron Campbell
    Cameron Campbell
  • Julia Woods
    Julia Woods

12 Reviews

Julia W. January 11, 2015
Looks delicious! I love anything that walks the line between light and hearty, savory but not too rich.
Lauren P. January 9, 2015
Love this soup!!! Perfect for cold winter months.
susan January 8, 2015
Always looking for a great vegan recipe and this
fits the bill! The rest of the family loves it also....
debbie L. January 8, 2015
My family loves soup and this is a perfect winter soup!! Taste delicious!
Betsy K. January 7, 2015
I have made this soup twice now and am having it for dinner tonight! It is comforting and so tasty with the pesto crouton as garnish!
susan C. January 7, 2015
This is the perfect after ski soup!
Jennifer S. January 7, 2015
I love having the variety of greens, and the fact that it freezes well. I always like to have a healthy soup in the freezer if I'm not feeling well.
Nancy C. January 7, 2015
Healthy and delicious! Love the crunchy crouton with pesto.
Kim January 7, 2015
Cameron C. January 7, 2015
Healthy and delicious with pesto. Yum!
denise S. January 7, 2015
We made a vegetarian version by using olive oil as the cooking fat and vegetable broth instead of chicken broth. Still delicious! Great way to clean out the fridge of odds and ends of greens for the 10 cups of mixed greens. Agree that the pesto crouton makes it xtra satisfying.
nancy G. January 7, 2015
I love this soup, its the perfect winter time meal. And its extra yummy with the pesto crouton on top.