this is my contribution to "alberto's"is my blog burning?" project.
ideas like this don't change the world but make better meals.
which is a good enough contribution as far as i'm concerned.
my original intention was to make something i had never made before, a localized version of an italian classic, pasta & fagioli (pasta & bean soup), which in its most rustic and risqué version calls for generous quantities of sausage. as we will see later things didn't quite go my way.
this soup is not a looker, it's not the right subject for glamorous photos but its texture has a smoothness that embraces like a soft duvet and its flavour is an antidepressant a hundred times stronger that prozac.
- borlotti beans, three tins for four people. the done thing would be to soak the dry beans overnight then boil them for a couple of hours. the acceptable shortcut is to buy good quality tinned borlotti. using another kind of beans would be an unacceptable shortcut.
- sausage. good sausage. oh how i've been longing for a proper sausage. a sausage without bloody rusk! a simple pork sausage, nothing fancy in it... i've finally found an acceptable sausage, with an unobtrusive amount of rusk, good enough to stop me from taking the next flight to milan.
- galangal. i could not cook without it.
- garlic. i could not get near a kitchen without it.
- onion. i could not go back home without it.
- carrot. just a little finger's worth. organic.
- glutammate free vegetable stock powder or -better!- some real stock.
- some tagliatelle, crushed into small pieces.
i sear the sausage in not too much olive oil, then remove it.
i finely chop half an onion and the carrot and fry them gently until the onion is transparent.
one tin of beans is pureed in the food processors with a clove of garlic and an inch of galangal then added to the pot, along with the beans from the other two tins, the now-chopped sausage, the stock or stock powder and water.
bring to the boil. simmer, simmer & simmer. too dense? add water. too liquid? simmer some more.
the soup is ready. it's early so i turn off the flame and let it rest. i join the others in the living room. just before meal time i will bring the soup to the boil again, add the crushed pasta and serve after five minutes.
this is not going to happen. we will be too impatient and i will serve the lukewarm soup with a drizzle of good extra virgin olive oil and a sprinkle of black pepper. oh and a very decorative sprig of rosemary.
my blog burned, and it was good.