A simple, cheap and comforting 'cucina povera' broth.
A broth or a stew, depending on how much water you use, and how long you cook it.
Minestra is a warming, comforting and cheap meal. The longer you cook it, the denser the taste.
The traditional Italian serving is to lay stale bread on the bottom of the bowl and spoon the minestra over it; great if you have bread that's gone a bit hard - if not, try toast!
1 onion (half for 2 servings)
pork belly - or whatever meat you have leftover. I used pork loin for this.
cabbage - kale would do as well.
1 tin cannellini beans
thyme, pepper, salt
Watch the video
Finely chop the, cabbage, onion and garlic
Cut the meat into bite-sized chunks
Heat some olive oil in a pot
Add the onions and garlic
Add the meat - you don't want to seal it; you want the meat to flavour the whole dish
Add the cabbage
Add the cannellini beans (you can use whatever beans you have - just not baked beans!
Don't drain the beans - you'll want the liquid from the tin
Add the hot water - I use the bean tin for this as a way of getting every last drop from it.
Add thyme, pepper and salt. Have a go at trying other herbs and see what you think
Simmer for about an hour - keep an eye on it. The longer, the tastier
Put two slices of stale bread or thick cut toast in the bowl and ladle the minestra over it
Sprinkle with parmesan or flaked chilli - or both!