ACQUACOTTA (Serves 6)
Acquacotta means “cooked water,” but that doesn’t begin to describe how delicious this soup is! It also freezes beautifully, so double the recipe if you like. Adding a Parmesan cheese rind to the soup while it’s cooking is a clever Italian method for deepening flavors.
1 lb. Swiss chard or kale 4 Tbs. extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
1 large yellow onion, finely chopped
2 carrots, peeled and finely chopped
2 stalks celery, finely chopped
1⁄2 tsp. salt, or to taste
1⁄2 tsp. crushed red pepper, or more to taste
2 Tbs. tomato paste
1 cup tomato purée
2-inch Parmesan rind
6 1-inch-thick slices Italian bread
Grated Parmesan cheese for garnish
Rinse chard in several changes of water until completely free of grit. Drain, stack leaves on cutting board and finely chop.
Heat olive oil in large pot over medium heat. Add onion, carrots and celery, and cook, stirring often, about 10 minutes, or until softened. Stir in salt, crushed red pepper and tomato paste; cook 2 minutes.
Reduce heat to medium-low, add 8 cups water, tomato purée, Parmesan rind and chopped greens. Cook, partially covered, 45 minutes, or until very thick, stirring occasionally; add more water if needed. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Remove rind.
To serve, place slice of bread in bottom of each bowl. Fill with soup, sprinkle with cheese, drizzle with oil and serve.
PER SERVING: 328 CAL; 7G PROT; 21G TOTAL FAT (3.5G SAT. FAT); 28G CARB; 4MG CHOL; 847MG SOD; 4G FIBER; 6G SUGARS
Recipe from the Mar. '06 issue of Vegetarian Times.