I go for groceries and see pumpkins, one of autumn’s colorful sculptural fruits and vegetables,piled high in front of the Jewel. Since last week, cooler temperatures inspired me to think roast, braise, and bake—hearty stews, soups, and casseroles with crusty bread. As a devout gardener, I know Brussel sprouts, cabbage, carrots, and parsnips actually grow sweeter after the first frost.
Turning leaves on their way to autumn splendor invite me to visit the bountiful farmers markets this time of year in the Midwest. I take a trip to the nearest one and come home with everything to make a hearty and flavorful soup. I mix the flavors of salt pork and root vegetables to serve up a fall favorite, my grandfather’s specialty—minestrone soup. I include it here as part of the Cavelli Cookbook we plan to post on my website soon. As Seth Truitt realizes when he returns to Bellaluna in my next book, food is at the heart of the Cavelli family. Like so many of the recipes passed down in my family, there are no portion measurements. Next time, I will share Gabriel Cavelli’s bracciole recipe with you, the one he hoped would bring Charity around to his way of thinking in Angel Lost, Angel Found: release date November 6th.
Hungry yet? Come on over. There’s always room for one more at the table!
Daliso Lenci’s Minestrone Recipe:
Salt pork: chop finely and fry slowly
Add hot water
Add chopped onions, cabbage, carrots, and celery
Add canned tomatoes
Season with salt and pepper(be careful with the salt because of the salt pork base.)
Cook 2 hours adding kidney beans ½ hour before soup is done.
(Sometimes I vary this basic recipe a bit adding chopped greens or whatever I have handy. Instead of, or with, canned kidney beans, I also use cannellini, or garbanzo beans, or a combination of all three.)