Under the Tuscan Sun Ribollita

A few years back, okay more than a few but less than a decade, my friend Dawn and I attended a Chopping Block cooking class called Under the Tuscan Sun: Food and Wine of Tuscany. The chef prepared a new and exotic (to me) dish called ribollita. We both loved it and have been making it ever since.


Soup and Bread Debrief

Soup and Bread was quite the experience. Here's how my 3 gallons of ribollita and I spent the evening.

I was sandwiched between a culinary school graduate (chef?) and his rabbit soup and Foodgasm's hostess and her blood red beet soup. They took turns showing me the ropes. Don't rest the ladle on the table. Remove slow cooker lid for presentation. Add "made with chicken broth" on the soup sign so the vegans know. Helpful hints I was grateful to have.

Meanwhile my soup was heating oh so slowly and needed to be a safe 135 degrees. Rabbit soup guy wanted a taste regardless of its 120 degree-ness. Are you sure? I ask. He nods assuredly as I hand him a bowlful. He likes it (or so he said). I exhaled and returned to temperature surveillance.

Finally my soup was ready. I ladled it into bowls held by grinning people who believed they were about to eat a professionally prepared meal. At least one person returned for seconds from the cook formerly know as Swedish Chef II. I cannot believe they let me into this event, I thought. Clearly no one is doing background checks. I even ran out of soup before night's end.

So...banned from Soup and Bread? I think not.

Thank you founders Martha Bayne and Sheila Sachs for taking a chance on an unknown kid (that's a line from the movie Summer School in case it sounds familiar).

Check out Soup and Bread's own recap of the evening which includes photos and more info on the cooks. And come to The Hideout Wednesday nights from 5:30-8 through mid April for hot bowls of homemade goodness.

Next post: Ribollita Recipe


Jonah's Mostly Noodle Chicken Noodle Soup

As I sit here about to embark upon cooking and transporting three gallons of soup for tomorrow night's Soup and Bread event at the Hideout I cannot shake the fact that at lunchtime today I brought 2 cups of Whole Foods chicken broth to a simmer, added a pinch of salt, three turns of pepper and a handful of cooked-last-night Manischewitz fine egg noodles.

This was for older son, Jonah, who's been fighting a cold. He's rejected other chicken soup concoctions (enjoyed by Husband Todd and I) due to excessive vegetable presence so a simple combination was in order. Finally, success. The boy ate it up.

What made this soup different from all others? The broth was almost clear and a bit shimmery, like my grandma's made from chicken capon. No vegetables or outlandish spices were added, just salt and pepper and the Cadillac of soup noodles.

Tomorrow I will make a lovely (I hope) soup with 10 or so ingredients for diners likely to appreciate the chopping, sauteing, seasoning, tasting, and more seasoning involved in creating healthy goodness. Stay tuned for results. Fingers crossed my next post isn't titled, "Banned from Soup and Bread."

Meanwhile try Jonah's Mostly Noodle Chicken Noodle Soup. You can do it!