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Jul 31, 2011 12:03 PM

Minestrone with Parmesan Rind

Could you share a recipe for a great minestrone using a leftover parmesan rind? Thank you.

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  1. You can use any recipe you want and just add the rind during the cooking process. If it's a large rind I cut it into big chunks--but make sure you count how many you have so you can pull them out later, they're hell on fillings!

    8 Replies
    1. re: escondido123

      I've never cooked with parmesan rinds! I assumed they melted into the soup. Thanks for telling me.

      1. re: DaisyM

        Nope, just a flavoring agent...

      2. re: escondido123

        HA! That's funny. DH always insists I leave the rinds in because he likes to chew on them a bit. Then he throws them away (discreetly of course). They get soft and a little gooey which is what he likes, I guess. As for me, I just like the added depth they give to the flavor of soup.

        1. re: LNG212

          Stupid question, you freeze the rinds to use in the future or do you just plan on making soup when you have a large chunk of parmesan cheese? Also, do you use the rind for anything other than minestrone soup?

          1. re: DaisyM

            I freeze all my rinds and add them to a lot of different soups including minestrone and pasta e fagioli soup. Any soup that you can imagine grating a bit of parmesan cheese on top is a good candidate for throwing in a rind.

            1. re: DaisyM

              I just keep them in a separate bag in the cheese drawer; they're pretty dry so I've never had them rot or mold. I now use them in risotto too. Just add them once I have about half the liquid in...I think it adds some extra flavor.

              1. re: DaisyM

                I do freeze mine. I keep them in a baggie on the door and just grab one as I need it. I too like them in all kinds of soup. They are especially good in soups with greens (escarole, chard).

                escondido - I've not tried putting them in risotto. That sounds great and I'll give it a go once it's risotto season again (i.e. not 90 degrees F). Thanks.

            2. re: escondido123

              I don't cut it up. By the time I'm putting it in soup it's so used up that it's all surface area anyway so one easy-to-find blob goes in and one easy-to-find blob gets fished out.

            3. I don't think they are that useful for flavoring, except in subtle soups comprised of few ingredients.

              1 Reply
              1. re: Karl S

                I've always used it in chicken soup (w/veg and pasta) and white bean soup. I always have a lot of rinds to put in, so it flavors these soups up pretty well.

              2. Marcella Hazan's recipe for minestrone uses parmesan rinds and is very, very good. I also freeze mine to save for it.

                1. Here's my tried and true recipe. It never gets old. I wish I could give credit where it was due, but I don't even remember where this came from anymore.

                  2 small leeks (or 1 large), white and light green parts, sliced thin
                  2 medium carrots, peeled and diced
                  2 small onions, diced
                  2 medium celery stalks, diced
                  1 baking potato, diced
                  1 med zucchini, diced
                  3 c fresh spinach leaves, cut into thin strips
                  28-oz can whole tomatoes packed in juice, drained and chopped
                  8 c water
                  1 parmesan cheese rind (approx 5 x 2 inches)
                  15-oz can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
                  1/4 basil pesto (or 1 T minced fresh rosemary mixed with 1 teaspoon minced garlic and 1 T extra-virgin olive oil)

                  Throw everything into a large pan except the beans and pesto and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender but still hold their shape, about an hour or 90 minutes or so.

                  Add beans and cook until just heated through, about 10 minutes. Remove pot from heat. Remove and discard cheese rind. Stir in pesto (or rosemary-garlic mixture). Adjust seasonings, adding pepper and more salt if necessary.