This soup really surprised me. I had eaten escarole in soups before, but never as the main ingredient. I didn’t anticipate the amount of flavor that these simple ingredients could impart. When I was reading the recipe I was wondering why you would need to dilute the beef stock. I couldn’t imagine that you wouldn’t need the richness of the stock to compensate for the lack of other ingredients. Silly me. This is one time that I am very glad that I didn’t tinker with the recipe. Trust me I started to, but then thought, I have to be true to Marcella’s recipe, and I am so glad that I was. The magic is in the balance of flavors.
After I chopped the escarole and got it cooking with the onions and beef broth, I thought the smell was unpleasant. I let the escarole cook for about 50 minutes until it was tender and amazingly the smell changed drastically over that course of time. It started smelling better and better. Once I added the diluted beef broth and the Arborio I knew it would be great. When it finally finished and I had shot the picture, I sat down to eat a bowl. I was so thrilled with the soup that I was tempted to eat it all! I didn’t though, Michael would never forgive me! His Zia used to make a soup like this when he was really little, so it was definitely a trip back in time for him. This soup will be a keeper for us.