Il Pancotto - Wine & Spirits Magazine

Il Pancotto


  • Two or three small potatoes per person, peeled and sliced. (You can leave on the skins although no one here would.)
  • A small chile pepper
  • A few cloves of garlic, peeled. The finer you chop it, the stronger the flavor, transporting the taste decidedly from Italy to Little Italy. Here we leave it whole.
  • Your best rustic bread—day old is fine, even better.
  • A bundle of wild arugula, the kind you can smell from across the room
  • Your absolute best extra-virgin olive oil (a bitter, Southern varietal would be ideal, such as coratina, carolea, majatica or ogliarola)
  • Salt to taste


  • Put the potatoes in pot with the garlic cloves.
  • Cover with cold water, add salt and bring to a boil.
  • Add the bread, cut or broken into pieces that easily fit onto a spoon.
  • Tear the arugula in half and toss into pot with the chile.
  • Simmer 10 minutes undisturbed. Poor in a slug of oil, and allow to sit for a few minutes to amalgamate.
  • Spoon into warm bowls, doused with more olive oil.

This story appears in the print issue of June 2016.
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