Chickpea, Tomato, and Bread Soup (Ribolita).

Chickpea, Tomato, and Bread Soup (Ribolita)

Adapted from Yotam Ottolenghi’s Plenty

1 large yellow onion, washed, peeled, and thinly sliced

1 medium fennel bulb, washed, peeled, and thinly sliced

¼ cup 0live oil

1 large carrot, washed, peeled, and sliced into small coins

3 large celery stalks, washed with the greens removed, thinly sliced

1 tablespoon tomato paste

14 oz. can Italian stewed tomatoes

1 tablespoon fresh oregano, chopped

¼ cup fresh curly parsley, chopped

1 tablespoon fresh thyme

4 large sage leaves

1 tablespoons white sugar

2 tablespoons soy sauce

1 ½ cups white wine

4 cups vegetable stock

Salt and freshly cracked black pepper, to taste

2 cups sourdough bread, cut into inch-cubes (I used a pepper, parsley, spice bread instead, delicious!)

¼ cup olive oil

salt and pepper to taste

2 cans cooked chickpeas, with the liquid from one can

1 tablespoon unsalted butter

4 tablespoons basil pesto

Shredded fresh basil, optional

1. Heat the olive oil in a large soup pot over medium-high heat. Add the onion and fenel and sauté until softened, about 4 minutes. Add the carrot and celery and sauté an addition 4 minutes. Stir the tomato paste and let cook, covered, for about 4 minutes.

2. Add the tomatoes, herbs, sugar, and soy sauce and let simmer for about 1 minute. Add the vegetable stock and season with salt and freshly cracked black pepper to taste. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer. Simmer for 45 minutes.

3. While waiting, toast the bread for about 15 minutes in a 350 degree Fahrenheit oven with olive oil, a sprinkle, and freshly cracked black pepper. In a separate bowl, pour one can of chickpeas with the canning liquid, and one without. Roughly mash the peas with a potato masher.

4. After the soup has simmered for 45 minutes, add the chickpeas and simmer for an addition 10 minutes. Stir in the bread and simmer for another 5 minutes. Season the soup with salt and freshly cracked black pepper, as well as the last tablespoon of butter. Serve each portion of soup with a tablespoon of pesto and torn basil.

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