is one of the recipes that has been provided by
Shirley Cline from San Francisco in response to
my quest for recipes using Balsamic Vinegar. (You
can contact Shirley by emailing her - click here).
is from Lidia's Italian Table. I've made it several
times and everyone loves it. I use the Great Northern
1/2 cups dried borlotti beans or cranberry,
pinto or white beans
3 quarts cold water
3 large baking potatoes, peeled
2 sprigs fresh rosemary
2 fresh or dried bay leaves
1 1/2 tsp. peperoncino (red pepper flakes)
2 Tblsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 medium size onion, chopped
1 recipe Trito (recipe follows)
1 cup canned peeled Italian plum tomatoes, crushed
1/4 lb. ham hocks or fresh or smoked pork butt
or other meat for flavoring, parboiled
1 cup ditalini pasta
Salt and fresh ground black pepper
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
4 garlic cloves, peeled
1/2 cup shredded carrots
1/2 cup lightly packed chopped fresh Italian
3 Tblsp. extra virgin olive oil plus 1 Tblsp
extra, if storing
over the beans, discarding any stones or other
objects and any beans that are discolored. Place
the beans in a deep bowl and pour in enough
cold water to cover them by at last 4 inches.
Soak the beans in a cool place for at least
8 hours, or overnight.
the beans and transfer them to a deep heavy
4-5 quart pot. Add the water, potatoes, rosemary,
bay leaves and crushed red pepper and bring
to a boil over high heat. Adjust the level of
the heat to medium and cook, stirring occasionally
for 30 minutes.
in a medium size skillet, heat the olive oil
over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring
often until light golden, about 6 minutes. Stir
in the trito and continua cooking until fragrant
and very lightly browned, about 2 minutes. Add
the crushed tomatoes and simmer for 10 minutes.
the trito mixture into the soup pot. If using
ham hocks, add them now. Continue simmering
until the beans are tender, about 1 hour. If
using pork butt, add it 30 minutes after adding
the trito mixture.
as soon as the potatoes are cooked, transfer
them to a bowl, mash them roughly and return
them to the pot (the soup can be prepared to
this point up to 2 days in advance and refrigerated.
Bring the soup to a boil before continuing).
all of the ingredients in a food processor or
blender and process until very smooth. Stop
the machine once or twice to scrape down the
sides of the container. Transfer the trito to
a small bowl and smooth the surface.
store, drizzle 1 tablespoon of oil over the
surface and refrigerate for up to one week.