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Mixed cereal “zuppa” with pumpkin, pecorino cheese, olives and sundried tomato

Mixed cereal “zuppa” with pumpkin, pecorino cheese, olives and sundried tomato

The Italian word “zuppa” translates as “soup,” “stew,” “porridge,” and (for Americans) “gumbo” and “chowder” – which works best depends on how thick the zuppa is. This particular recipe can be made thick, almost the consistency of a risotto. The combination of pumpkin, pecorino cheese, olives and sun-dried tomato is delicious and colorful, and makes a healthy lunch or supper.

Ingredients for 2 portions

Rapid cooking mixed grains and legumes 160 gr (combinations of barley, bulger, farro, quinoa, lentils, and other small beans are good)
pumpkin pulp 400 gr
black olives 50 gr
sun-dried tomatoes 30 gr
pecorino cheese 40 gr (or other cheese as you like)
extra virgin olive oil 2 tbsp
garlic 1 clove
parsley
laurel 1 leaf
salt and pepper
vegetable broth or hot water 2 cups
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Equipment

Chopping board, knife, medium sauce-pan, baking tray, parchment paper, ladle.

Preparation

Preheat the oven to 180° and line a baking tray with parchment paper.
Wash the pumpkin and remove the seeds, and cut it into thick slices, then place it on the tray, grease it slightly, and bake for about 20 minutes.
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Meanwhile cook the cereals. In a medium sauce pan, heat the oil with the bay leaf,  garlic, and the chopped sun-dried tomatoes.

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Cook for 1 minute, add the cereals and toast well as if to make a risotto.

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After a minute cover with water or vegetable stock and finish cooking; it takes about 10/15 minutes depending on the mix of cereals you use. While cooking, add liquids if necessary and turn the heat off.

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Remove the cooked pumpkin from the oven, peel, and dice into small cubes.

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Cut pecorino cheese into regular cubes and pit the olives. Wash and chop the parsley.

Set aside a few cubes of pecorino and some parsley, for decoration.

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Put the pumpkin, olives, and remaining parsley and pecorino into the pan with the cereals, and mix well.

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Serve in wide, shallow bowls or deep dinner plates, topping each portion with the remaining pecorino, parsley, and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.

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Tips.
You can use mixed grains and legumes or other varieties as you wish. Instead of Pecorino cheese, you can use grilled tofu or smoked seitan, then the recipe becomes vegan.

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