Stella McCartney's winter minestrone recipe
Don’t be fooled by the name — the character of this thick, wholesome soup is more North African than Italian. It has a lot in common with the European version though, with the couscous playing a similar role to the vermicelli noodles found in many recipes.
- 200g (7.1 oz) Farro semiperlato (or pearled spelt)
- 4 tbsp Olive oil, plus extra to serve
- 1 Large onion, finely chopped
- 1 Leek, finely chopped
- 1 Stick celery, finely chopped
- 2 Medium carrots, peeled and finely chopped
- 1 Medium turnip, peeled and finely chopped
- 3 Garlic cloves, crushed
- 1 pinch Crushed dried chilli flakes
- 400g (14.1 oz) Tinned tomatoes
- 1l (1.8 pints) Vegetable stock
- 400g (14.1 oz) Tinned cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 Bunch cavolo nero, shredded
- 1 pinch Salt
- 1 pinch Freshly ground black pepper
- 1 handful Freshly grated vegetarian parmesan to serve
- Cuisine: African
- Recipe Type: Main
- Difficulty: Medium
- Preparation Time: 10 mins
- Cooking Time: 50 mins
- Serves: 4
- Rinse the farro in a sieve under cold running water, tip into a bowl, cover with cold water and soak for 20 minutes while you prepare the soup base. Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan. Add the chopped veggies and cook over a low-medium heat for 10-15 minutes until tender but not coloured. Add the crushed garlic and chilli flakes and cook for a further minute.
- Pour the tomatoes into the pan, add the stock and bring to the boil. Drain the farro and add to the pan. Reduce the heat to a gentle simmer, cover and cook the soup for 25 minutes until the vegetables are tender and the farro is cooked. Add the cannellini beans and cook for a further 2-3 minutes. You may need to add extra stock if the soup is too thick. Add the cavolo nero and cook for 3-4 minutes until tender.
- Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Serve in bowls with a drizzle of olive oil, a scattering of grated Parmesan and slices of toasted sourdough bread.
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