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Minestrone Pirini

4 White onions; chopped
3 tb Olive oil
2 Cloves garlic; minced
1/2 sm Cabbage; sliced
2 Ribs celery; sliced
2 md Carrots; chopped finely
4 Zucchini; sliced
6 Sprigs parsley
3 Bay leaves; (fresh if possible)
6 c Good quality beef stock
1/2 c Canneli beans
1/2 c Kidney beans
1/2 c Chick peas; (ceci)
2 tb Tomato paste
12 Basil leaves; chopped
1 100 gram piece parmesan rind
Salt and pepper to taste
1 c Good red wine

The night before, mix the canneli beans, kidney beans and chick peas together and soak in cold water overnight.

Saute the onions and garlic in the olive oil for 5 minutes or until soft. Add all the remaining vegetables except zucchini and cook for a further 5 minutes.

Add the beef stock, tomato paste, soaked bean mixture, basil, parsley and salt and pepper to taste and simmer for 2 hours or until thick and fragrant. Add the parmesan cheese rind (in one piece), then sliced and a little extra water if necessary to thin the soup. Cook for a further 30 minutes, remove bay leaves and serve.

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