My Giambotta (Vegetable Stew/Soup)

My Giambotta (Vegetable Stew/Soup)

I know what you are thinking...Giambotta? What the heck is that?! The translation from Italian is "vegetable stew". There is probably an official recipe for Giambotta on the web, however, growing up, this was a dish we made with whatever we had on hand (specifically veggies!). This is mainly a vegetarian dish but I believe in different regions of southern Italy, they will also include fish or meat.  In my Italian family, we have always made ours primarily vegetarian.  I remember my dad used to use leftover fried potatoes, green beans, and even frozen corn (he really loves corn)! This is my version which has ended up becoming more of a soup rather than the classic stew (if you prefer a stew, use less liquid).  It is such a versatile dish so don't feel restricted by my ingredients. I concocted this while trying to clean out our fridge and freezer! It received two thumbs up in my house so I decided to write it down and share. See recipe below.

My Giambotta

1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp. of crushed red pepper (optional)
1 onion, chopped
2 large carrots, peeled and chopped
6 celery stalks, chopped
1 small head of garlic, peeled and chopped
1 carton of Pomi chopped tomatoes
1 12 oz. bag of frozen artichokes, chopped (tough tops removed)
1 bundle of fresh thyme or 1 tsp. of dried thyme
1/4 of ancient grain mix (rice, pearl barley, wheat berry, etc.)
6 cups of water or low sodium veggie stock
3-4 Tbsp. of a good pesto
1 15 oz. can of cannelini beans, drained and rinsed
2 cups of frozen whole leaf spinach, chopped
Himalayan salt, to taste
Ground pepper, to taste
Grated Pecorino Romano for serving

In a Dutch oven, heat the oil on low to medium.  Add your crushed red pepper and onions, saute until translucent.  Add in your carrots and celery.  Once the veggies get some nice color, add in your garlic, and saute for a minute (you don't want the garlic to brown).  Next, add in your tomatoes and simmer until they are reduced by half (roughly 5 to 10 minutes).  Toss in your artichokes, thyme bundle, grains, and stir so that everything is nicely coated.  Add the water and the pesto. Cover and bring to a boil. Lower to a simmer, covered, for 30 minutes (or until the grains are cooked through).  Add the beans, spinach, and simmer for 10 more minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.  Sprinkle Romano cheese on top before serving and enjoy!

Photos by Becky Loves Cooking
Recipe by Becky Loves Cooking


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