My great, great grandfather lived to 105. He died in mass in the small Italian village of Frassinoro located high in the Appenine Mountains outside of Modena, Italy. A staple of the diet in this area of Italy is "Ribollita”.
My daughter Julia and I love to make Ribollita together in the fall and winter months. Ribollita basically means re-boiled. It is great the next day when the water is fully absorbed.
Begin by chopping up several vegetables - lacinato kale, swiss chard, parsley, one leek, zucchini, one peeled chopped potato, smash a garlic clove, and rinse a can of cannellini beans. Next finely chop a carrot, celery, and onion in equal proportions. This makes the "sofritto" or the base of the Ribollita. Put the carrots, celery, and onions in a hot pan with olive oil. Get the olive oil hot first. Season with sea salt and black pepper. Stir on low heat until the sofritto is translucent. Next add enough water to cover the sofritto and add the potatoes, bay leaf, a parmigiano reggiano rind, the smashed garlic clove, and leek let cook for 12 minutes. Then add water as needed to cover the Ribollita. Taste the broth and add salt as needed. Then add the the leafy greens and cannelini beans. It is then ready in 3-5 minutes.
Traditionally, a hearty crusty bread is put on the bottom of one's soup bowl. Cover the bread with the Ribollita. Season with grated parmigiano reggiano and big drizzle of olive oil. If you choose to add bread, Neidlov's wholey whole wheat is a great choice!
Buon appetito! Cent' Anni!