The birds sing, the sun shines and the People’s President is sworn in ….


I sit in the garden, the weather is glorious and I am overwhelmed by the brilliant light we are accustomed to here, a brightness I appreciate so much after years of English gray skies. And as my minestra cooks indoors, I watch the inauguration of the 9th President on my IPad.


On the screen I see well-wishers from all walks of life as the President mingles with the crowds. Her Presidency will focus on diversity and inclusiveness. She is there for the people and she is adored by them.


Tonight, we are having a light supper of vegetable minestra with ham hock, peppered cheeselets and sourdough bread and you will not believe how good the local bread is….

1 kilo Vegetables of your choice, chopped and peeled, to include carrots, pumpkin, potatoes and zucchini
2 Stock Cubes
1 kilo pulses to include split peas, and barley, orange lentils, cannelloni beans, chick peas, all dried and soaked overnight
1 ham hock
Tomato Purée, calculate about 1 spoon per two portions
Onion, 1/4 per, two portions
Garlic clove, optional
Parsley, finely chopped
A drizzle of olive oil for cooking the vegetables
You can also add small pasta shapes but we left this out today.

For a vegetarian option leave out the ham hock

Sauté the finely chopped onion and garlic in a drizzle of olive oil. Add the chopped vegetables and pulses stirring continuously on low heat. Dissolve the stock cube/s in some hot water and add to the pot. Add the ham hock, then water to the vegetables until they are immersed. Bring to boil and simmer for an hour making sure that the water does not dry out and carry on cooking for a bit longer if necessary. The vegetables and pulses should be soft.
Stir and add some tomato purée and around 10 g of small pasta shapes per portion. Today we had ours without the pasta. Season. Remove from heat once the pasta is cooked and add some of the finely chopped parsley and give it another stir. Cover and leave to stand for 10 minutes.

Serve with finely grated Parmeggiano Reggiano and we like ours with lots of freshly ground pepper.

13 responses to “The birds sing, the sun shines and the People’s President is sworn in ….”

      1. Always my pleasure.

  1. What a beautiful photograph from your garden! Looks like paradise to me.

    1. Thank you Lisa, it is a very beautiful island and we are blessed with all the good things life has to offer ! Have a lovely Sunday !

  2. One of my favorite types of soup but I have never made it with a ham hock.

    1. Thank you Jovina, do try it and let me know what you think !

  3. I wish your new President all the usefulness and fruitful interaction that she could want … And your soup looks wonderful (but for the ham hock, said thisv vego), Lea !
    Happy times, you marvellous creature !!!

    1. Thank you Margaret Rose, the President is a wonderful woman and I am sure she would be delighted with your good wishes. Leave the ham hock out and do try it, I am very sure you will love it ! Have a great Sunday !

  4. So much so beautiful!!! You make me want to jump on a plane! X

  5. Reblogged this on Ace Food News 2014 and commented:
    #AceFoodNews2014 – Nice weather and longing for it in the UK to turn this 🙁 into this 🙂

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