Minestrone with Orecchiette and Borlotti Beans

35 minutes - 40 minutes
to cook

The cheating element come from having most of the vegetables ready prepared and the beans ready cooked.

I'm not pretending it's totally authentic but, believe me, the end result tastes very Italian.

NOTE: This recipe is from the book Delia's How to Cheat at Cooking, which was published in 2008; therefore you may have difficulty finding the exact named shop ingredients that were available then.  We have kept these recipes on the site, as we know many people have successfully adapted them to what is currently available.

The Delia Online Cookery School: Watch how to prepare garlic in our video. Just click the image to play.

A picture of Delia's How to Cheat at Cooking

This recipe is from Delia's How to Cheat at Cooking. Serves 4-6

  • method
  • Ingredients


First, whiz the celery, onion, pancetta and garlic together in a mini-chopper until chopped quite small.

The heat the oil in a large pan and add the chopped ingredients.  Next, put the carrot and swede in the mini-chopper and pulse till chopped just a little more finely.  Add that to the rest, stir it all around briefly and, keeping the heat high, cook for about 5 minutes.

After that, add the tomatoes and stock and, when it begins to simmer, add some seasoning, cover with a lid and cook gently for 20 minutes.  Meanwhile, shred the cabbage a bit more finely in the mini-chopper, then when the time's up, take the lid off and stir in the pasta, borlotti beans and cabbage.  Bring it back to simmering point, then let it continue to cook gently, uncovered, for a further 10-15 minutes.  Serve in heated bowls with chopped basil and lots of Parmesan, and have some warm ciabatta or focaccia for dipping into to go with it.

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