Vegetable & Risoni Soup

It's not winter yet, however I've just returned to a cold wet Sydney after a week on Koh Samui in Thailand and it feels like winter. So what's one of the best things to eat on an unusually cool and wet Summer's night that feels like winter? A hearty, chunky bowl of Italian inspired soup. The great thing about this style of soup is you don't need to be exact. You can add various vegetables you happen to have sitting around in the fridge. I serve this sprinkled with some freshly grated parmesan and sometimes some chilli. It's also nice with some squeezed lemon juice over the top.

1 medium sized onion, roughly chopped
4 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
1 carrot, peeled and diced
1 stalk of celery, de-strung and diced
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 large red chilli, halved and de-seeded
1 fresh bay leaf
3 medium sized potatoes, peeled and cut into large chunks (good waxy potatoes that won't disintegrate such as desiree are perfect)
1 cup of peeled, chopped butternut pumpkin
1 cup of peeled, copped sweet potato
2 litres of stock (I use 1 litre of vegetable and 1 litre of chicken)
6 roma tomatoes, cut into large chunks
1 cup risoni pasta
4 tablespoons olive oil
A small bunch of parsley and basil made into a bouquet garni
Freshly grated parmesan to serve

1. Heat the oil in a large heavy based saucepan over a medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, carrot, celery, oregano, chilli and bay leaf. Stir in some salt and pepper and cook with the lid on for 10 minutes, stirring every couple of minutes.
2. Add stock, potatoes, pumpkin, sweet potato, tomatoes, bouquet garni and bring to the boil. Reduce to low heat and simmer with lid on for 30 minutes, stirring every 5-10 minutes.
3. Add risoni and simmer for a further 30 minutes, stirring every few minutes.
4. Serve with the freshly grated parmesan over the top and a light bodied red wine.


  1. Hi Sean - What? It's not winter yet? I'm in trouble. I just happened upon your site - nice recipes. Thought some of your readers might want to know more about how to make a bouquet garni. Cheers!

  2. Hi Kim,
    Thanks for your comment. I'm so pleased you stumbled upon my blog. I've had a look at your site and I love the concept...French cooking without the fuss!
    Thanks for your suggestion about posting information on making a bouquet garni. I hope you don't mind me adding it as a post with a link to your site.

  3. What a fantabulous post this has been. Never seen this kind of useful post. I am grateful to you and expect more number of posts like these. Thank you very much. consegna verdura alessandria


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