This has been Katherine's favorite recipe to cook for guests ever since she read it in the New York Times Dining section in 2008.

2 Tablespoons olive oil

1 Tablespoon minced garlic

1 Tablespoon fennel seeds

1 teaspoon dried thyme

salt and pepper

3 cups white beans cooked with thyme, salt and fennel seeds

1 14oz can diced tomatoes, or fresh if you have them

1/2 lb spinach or kale

3 cups freshly toasted croutons (see method below)

1.  Heat oil in large, deep skillet.  Add garlic and spices.  Season with salt and pepper to taste. 

2.  Add beans and about 1/2 cup bean cooking liquid.  Stir and simmer over medium heat for 2-3 minutes, then add tomatoes.  Simmer another 2-3 minutes.

3.  Add spinach/kale and stir until wilted.

4.  Add croutons and mix in thoroughly so they don't get too soggy. 

5.  Serve hot with extra bread crumbs sprinkled on top.


Preheat oven to 350.  Chop day old or older crusty bread into cubes about 1" square.  Lay in a single layer on a baking sheet and drizzle liberally with olive oil.  Sprinkle with salt and put in the oven.  Bake 15-20 minutes, stirring once, until brown and toasted on at least one side.  No need to cool before adding to recipe.

Ribollita, hot on the stove.

Ribollita, hot on the stove.