Minestrone with prosciutto and potato dumplings
( SERVES 6 )
With any vegetable soup, I cut the ingredients small enough to fit onto a spoon so I get a bit of everything with each mouthful. Don't throw away the rind or heels of wedges of parmesan as they can be kept in a plastic bag, either in the refrigerator or freezer, until required. Making your own dumplings is not essential, I have no problem using store-bought gnocchi as a replacement.
|60 g||Prosciutto, scraps|
|2 Tbsp||Unsalted butter|
|1 Tbsp||Olive oil|
|200 g||Green beans|
|1 Ltr||Vegetable stock|
|500 g||Crushed tomatoes|
|1||Parmesan cheese, good-sized piece of heel|
|2 cans||Cannellini beans, (2 x 250g cans)|
|1 handful||Flat leaf (Italian) parsley, chopped|
|1 to serve||Parmesan cheese, grated|
- In a deep pan, sauté the prosciutto scraps in the butter and olive oil. Peel and finely chop the onion and add to the pan, cooking until they soften and become shiny.
- Peel and cut the carrots into small cubes that will fit easily onto a soup spoon, then add them to the onion. Cut the potato and green beans the same size as the carrots and add the potatoes to the pot, cooking over a low heat until the vegetables begin to soften.
- Stir in the green beans and pour in the stock and crushed tomatoes. Add the piece of parmesan heel, bring the soup to a simmer and cook for 1 hour, until the soup begins to thicken.
- Drain and rinse the cannellini beans under cold running water to remove their brine and add to the pot along with the chopped parsley. Cook for 10 minutes, check the seasoning and serve with the grated parmesan on the side.
- Preheat the oven to 180C.
- Wrap the potatoes in foil and bake for 1 hour until tender.
- Remove them from the oven and scoop out the potato from the middle and discard the skins.
- Mash the potato and weigh out 400g, add the flour, salt and mix together in a large bowl. Add the oil and egg and mix them in bit by bit, slowly drawing the egg into the potato mix until you have a soft dough. Knead the dough until smooth, then roll it into long sausages and cut into 1cm pieces.
- Roll each piece into a small ball. Bring a large pot of salted water to the boil, then adjust the heat to a simmer.
- Drop in the dumplings, and as they rise to the surface, lift them out with a slotted spoon and drop them into the minestrone soup.