This typical Venetian soup, popular throughout the whole of Italy, was the dish which was always served to the Doges on the occasion of the feast of San Marco. The characteristic of most of the Venetian “minestre” is their thickness—in fact, in this country Italian minestre would hardly be called “soups,” being more in the nature of what, in old English cooking, was called “pottage.”
It is difficult to give the exact proportion of the ingredients, as much depends on the quality of the rice used, and it is not always possible to get Italian rice. The method, however, is simple enough. The rice is cooked in butter to a golden colour, with a little chopped onion, celery and either gammon or ham. Hot stock is then added gradually, and finally the peas. Stir well and simmer for ½ an hour or longer. It should be of the consistency of porridge.