A warm and comforting soup for mid-winter. Cavolo nero is the dark-leaf Tuscan kale. Substitute cabbage if this is not available.
5 waxy potatoes, such as nicola
3 tbsp olive oil
100g pancetta or bacon, thinly sliced
1 tsp fennel seeds, roughly crushed
2 bay leaves
1 brown onion, cut into large cubes
2 x 400g tins chickpeas, drained and rinsed
130g cavolo nero, finely shredded
1.25L chicken or vegetable stock
salt and pepper
2 tbsp chopped parsley
bread to serve
Peel potatoes and celeriac, cut into large cubes and place in a bowl of water to cover. Set aside.
Heat oil in large pot, add pancetta, fennel and bay leaves and cook over medium heat for a few minutes. Add onion, drained potatoes and celeriac and cook for 10 minutes over medium heat.
Add chickpeas and cavolo nero, stir and cook for a few minutes. Add stock and cook on low heat for 30 minutes until vegetables are soft.
Season with salt and pepper and scatter over parsley. Serve with thick slices of buttered toast.