Pistou is French for “Pesto” – this soup is a celebration of home-grown
summer vegetables and olive oil…
Soak about 300 g of dried beans (according to taste) in cold water over
night. (You could use tinned beans if you really must).
The next day, chop up 3 or 4 small-ish, freshly picked courgettes, 3 or 4
waxy new potatoes, fresh broad beans (all to about half-inch cubes or slices),
and a de-seeded tomato.
Heat a dash of olive oil in a large pot, add all the above (having drained
the dried beans), along with a big sprig of fresh basil, and stir gently
before covering with cold water. Let it come to the boil, then simmer until
the potatoes and beans are cooked – the courgettes shouldn’t be too soft.
While the soup is cooking, use a blender to purify as much fresh basil as
you can find with 2 cloves of garlic and the de-seeded flesh of 2 oxheart
(cuore di bue) tomatoes, a generous pinch of sea-salt and a really generous
glug of best extra-vergin olive oil. This is the pistou.
Salt the soup. Then, to serve, pour the pistou into the soup at the table,
and eat with toasted bread with olive oil. Accompanied by a nice crispy
young white wine.