Minestra di Fave Bianche

White Broad Bean Soup


Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves


Appears in

The Italian Regional Cookbook

The Italian Regional Cookbook

By Valentina Harris

Published 2017

  • About

Purity of ingredients and utter simplicity sum up this nourishing winter recipe. In Puglia, where it originated, cooked rice or pastina (tiny pasta for soups) is often added to a finished soup to make it more sustaining. This dish is similar to the highly traditional, thick bean purée maccu di fave, the recipe for which is given. This soup, however, is topped with olive oil and a delicate sprinkling of freshly chopped chives.


  • 500 g/1 ¼ lb/3 cups dried white broad/fava beans (see Variation)
  • 2 litres/3 ½ pints/8 cups water
  • 90 ml/6 tbsp olive oil
  • sea salt and ground black pepper
  • chives, finely chopped, to garnish


  1. Put the dried white beans in a large, heavy pan and pour over the water. Cover the pan and leave the beans to soak for at least 24 hours.

  2. Transfer the pan containing the beans and soaking liquid to the hob and bring to the boil over a medium heat.

  3. Lower the heat and simmer for about 45-55 minutes, stiring frequently. Add more water if the purée appears to be drying out too much.

  4. When the beans have disintegrated and are smooth and creamy, season to taste, stir in the oil and sprinkle with chives.