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Papa al Pomodoro


  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), plus some for drizzling

  • 4-6 cloves garlic, chopped

  • 1 medium to large onion, finely chopped

  • 1 can diced tomatoes (15 ounces)

  • 1 ocan crushed tomatoes (28 ounces)

  • Salt and pepper

  • 1 quart chicken stock

  • 4 cups stale bread (about 1/2 pound), chopped or torn

  • 2 cans small white beans – smaller than cannellini beans (15 ounces each), such as Goya brand

  • 1/2 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, to pass at the table

  • 10 fresh basil leaves, torn (optional)


Heat a medium soup pot over medium heat. Add 3 tablespoons of EVOO, about three turns around the pan, garlic and three quarters of the onion. Cook for 7-8 minutes, then add the diced tomatoes and crushed tomatoes and season with salt and pepper. Add the stock and raise the heat to make the soup bubble. Reduce the heat to simmer and add the bread and beans. Stir the soup as it simmers, until it thickens to a stew-like consistency. Turn off the heat, adjust the seasonings and ladle the soup into shallow bowls. Top with grated cheese, an additional drizzle of EVOO and a spoonful of reserved finely chopped raw onions. Torn basil is an optional garnish.