Ristorante della Fontana's Minestrone Soup


Years and years ago, there was a fun Italian restaurant in downtown SLC. They served a seven course Italian dinner, including a Romaine salad you ate with your fingers, a sorbet palate cleanser, pasta, and the tastiest Minestrone soup I've ever had.
I was given this recipe as a newlywed, and was always a bit overwhelmed by the long list of ingredients. This cold winter weather inspired me to cook up a pot.

The long list...well worth it.

1/4 cup olive oil
3 cups diced onion
2 cups diced celery
2 cups diced carrot
1 cup diced tomatoes
1 cup whole, skinned tomatoes
1 cup french style green beans (I used frozen)
1 cup canned kidney beans
3 t salt
1 1/2 t white pepper
1 1/2 t garlic powder
4 T instant beef bouillon
3 T instant chicken bouillon (I substituted both with vegetable bouillon for my sweet husband)
1 1/2 tsp dried basil
2 t dried oregano
7 cups water
1 cup tomato puree
1/2 cup barley
1 cup frozen peas
1 cup canned garbanzo beans
1 cup macaroni, cooked
1 cup chopped spinach (I used frozen)
grated Parmesan cheese

In large, heavy saucepan, heat olive oil. Saute onions, carrots and celery until onions are translucent. Add diced and whole tomatoes, green beans, kidney beans, salt, pepper, garlic powder, bouillon, basil oregano, water, tomato puree and barley. Simmer 45 minutes.
Stir in peas, garbanzo beans, and pasta. Simmer 15 minutes. Add spinach. Serve hot, sprinkled with cheese.

14 comments:

e.brooke said...

HA! I remember going to Della Fontana, with the "older man" who lived down my street.

Ernie Burt.

I still like eating salad with my fingers...or toes...whatever...

and...I still hate sorbet!

Good times! Thank you for sharing!
This is fun to think about.

Jenn said...

Loved that restaurant! I'll have to try the soup! Good memories, it was a cool building/church. And the sorbet was fun as a young child. Thanks.

Health Seeker's Kitchen said...

We love homemade minestrone soup at our house. This recipe looks so tasty. I am definately going to make this:)

Caroline said...

I love minestrone, yet have never made a batch from scratch. It's a great soup to warm you up from the inside without being too heavy. I may have to whip up a batch before this winter is through!

Frieda said...

This restaurant is where I had my wedding luncheon! I really miss that place...thanks for the recipe!

Joanne said...

It's amazing the things the cold can drive you to do. Although this looks like it turned out super well!

I Heart Salt Lake said...

Talk about yummy!

rochelle said...

I totally remember Della Fontana's. Such a fun restaurant! Did we maybe go on a double date there? I will have to try this soup...it sounds delish!

Ashley said...

This recipe is amazing. It tasted like I was in the ristorante, seriously amazing soup!
Thanks for sharing!

BrentandMelanie said...

We used to go there as much as we could. Glen Young the owner would always make a point to come and say hi. Before he "retired" he asked us if we would be interested in his cookbook. We of course said yes and later he made good and sent us one. We use it all the time and the receipes are the greatest. The cookbook is not available anymore sadly.

Nell said...

This would soup looks good enough to eat with your fingers. However I would use a spoon.
If Spring is just tricking us, I may have to make it, with vegetable broth like you did for a Meatless Monday.

Marianna said...

OMG! I am so glad someone else remembers this place? My parents and I went there often when I was young. We loved hte halibut casserole and I fondly recall the salad, the great soup and the sorbet! I have lived away - in NY for over 30 years - and this plce suddenly came to mind and I found you when I googled it! I wish I could get the cookbook.

Jerri Lyn said...

My Italian husband and I got married in SLC in 1973. While I admit that I knew very little about real Italan cuisine, an earlier business lunch there helped me chose it as a surprise honeymoon dinner location. That night Fontan's and I both got 5 stars. We have often fondly remembered our dinner and that amazing setting. Very sorry to here it closed.

Jerri Lyn said...

My Italian husband and I got married in SLC in 1973. While I admit that I knew very little about real Italan cuisine, an earlier business lunch there helped me chose it as a surprise honeymoon dinner location. That night Fontan's and I both got 5 stars. We have often fondly remembered our dinner and that amazing setting. Very sorry to here it closed.