ORIGINAL POST Via SicilianCulture.com Octocber 28, 2009 – Minestrone is a vague term. Its basically a vegetable soup which can consist of any ingredients, usually vegetarian. Today I went to my friend Vittorios’s house for lunch. The last lunch I will eat before I leave the country to explore Brazil. It was a cold day, so he was using sliced up zucchini from the garden, some basil, salt, some beans from the garden, and a handful of linguini broken into 4 parts to serve as noodles rather than linguini. A dash of grated cheese and it is wonderful. This is not soup, and not quite a pasta dish but it is minestrone, you add vegetables one day, pasta the next, and maybe even something else like chicken the next so it lasts a week or more.
What I have learned from Vittorio is that leftovers are not bad, as long as you continue to re-invent them every day. I quite frankly don’t care for most leftovers, some, but not most. But in this manner, the Italians re-invent the dish so its something different each day. One day minestrone is a soup for lunch, the next day the dinner with toasted garlic bread, and the next day lunch again… you keep adding and modifying ingredients to make use of it as to not to waste and enjoy it every day.
While it is is getting colder and we need hotter food to warm our bodies, we use the leftover vegetables from the gardnen, hard pasta, olive oil, salt, and some boiling water. Again, this is not traditional fare. It is if you are not used to it, but if you are old school, its the norm.