In preparation for my latest book coming soon, be sure to get your
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Throwback Tuesday Post (TBTP): Every Tuesday, I re-post a past post that I think is relevant and that you’ll enjoy.
This post was originally published on February 12, 2014 and updated on February 26, 2019.
I am marveling a little and bragging a little when I say that, here in Munich, we have had mostly spring weather so far this winter, with temps in the 40s and 50s and many sunny days. Despite the local weather, I know my fellow Americans have had one hell of a harsh winter this year. With that in mind, I bring you a recipe for another Tuscan soup that I learned to make on my trip to Italy in December. May it help you stay warm and cozy.
The last recipe I posted was how to make ribollita, a traditional Tuscan winter soup. It’s a vegetarian’s dream, hearty and delicious. You may have noticed that it was thickened with day-old bread.
In this week’s post I bring you another traditional Tuscan winter soup just as hearty and delicious. And it’s even easier to make. Tuscan bread soup is not only thickened with day-old bread, but bread is the primary ingredient. Adding flavor are a little garlic, tomato puree and fresh basil.
Here’s a shot of my pal Cyndie with our chef-instructor Andrea preparing the soup at Fattoria di Corsignano, the agriturismo we stayed at:
And here is the bread-a-licious goodness cooking up on the induction element shortly thereafter:
I can attest to the staleness of the bread we used there. It was crusty Tuscan white bread to start with and was so hard that I found it difficult to cut into cubes with a chef’s knife. But I managed, amid flying crust shrapnel.
Finally, here is the finished product on my plate at dinner that evening:
From the above photo you can understand how thick the consistency of the finished soup is. In fact, I’ve been searching for another word besides ‘soup’ to describe it. ‘Paste’ came to mind, but it didn’t sound very appetizing.
At any rate, once we returned to Germany after our Tuscan trip, Cyndie and I tested out the recipe at the Komnata Chista Test Kitchens (my personal kitchen). Here is the result:
We got pretty close, as you can see. We used baguettes instead of Tuscan bread, but it seemed to serve. However, I couldn’t find any fresh basil for our version, so we used dried. The taste was almost the same, but I do recommend fresh basil if at all possible.
So here’s how you do it:
The soup is very filling and doesn’t take much for a serving. Fortunately it makes great leftovers. But cut this recipe in half for four people or less if you don’t want it to become a science experiment in the refrigerator later in the week.
This recipe is great for beginners and young people who are just learning how to cook. I hope you try this dish and let me know how you like it. Happy winter days!
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