Minestra ai fiori di zucchine…a soup fit for the gods!
According to my oldest daughter, this is the best soup I have ever made. Maybe I should just quit now, while I am ahead:)
Kidding aside, this soup is a wonderful entry point for those looking to create something this summer fresh from the garden, and those who are new to ‘using’ the whole zucchini plant.
First stop- the garden (or your farmer’s market), and pick up some of this:
Start by preparing your soffritto- pour a bunch of olive oil into a deep soup pot and add in the thinly sliced onions. Allow these to soften and turn a bit translucent.
If you have some fresh parsley in your herb garden, grab a handful of that goodness…or make sure you pick some up from the farmers market.
Mince it up and add it to onions, along with a minced clove of garlic…watch that the heat doesn’t get to hot and scorch the garlic or onions.
Next drop in your diced up potatoes and mix them well in the pot- allowing them to soak up the flavor. If you are growing some potatoes make sure you dig some up for this, as there is nothing like the taste of new potatoes.
Give this about 5 minutes or so and then add in your tomato conserve…
Don’t tell anyone, but this time I added what I had leftover in the fridge from the other night: Marcella Hazan’s tomato, butter, and onion sauce, with some left over San Marzano tomatoes from a pizza night.
Stir it up and to cook for a few minutes…allowing the flavor to build even more.
Then add in enough water to cover the veggies by an inch or so. Once stirred add in your beans or peas- I had fresh sugar snap peas and green beans. They were just fine! If you have fresh bartolotti or fava beans use those instead, or use all of it! Again, this is all about using what you have.
Mix it up real good and allow it to cook while you prep your zucchini.
Starting with your zucchini stalks- cut the stalks and leaves into bite size pieces…drop these all in and stir the pot!
Moving onto your zucchini fruit (as you see from the to image, I pick mine really young, as they are so tender then), cube it up and drop them in the pot and mix it all up…
Finally, it is time to complete this soup of the gods and drop in your zucchini flowers. Make sure to remove the pistils beforehand. And don’t forget to add an old heal of parmigiano cheese if you have one. Go ahead and stir one more time:)
Now it is just a matter of time…no need to rush this as you spent all this time building a wonderful pot of gold. Allow it to simmer with a lid slightly ajar for a little while. This soup can be served either hot or cold, and of course it will always be better the next day, so make sure you made enough for your leftovers!
Feel free to top it with a little cheese too!