Spelt Soup

Our hosts at the Palazetta del Vescovo, Paola and Stefano, are an accomplished cook and sommelier, and have created a peaceful haven for relaxing in the countryside.  They’ll teach us about traditional Umbrian cuisine on our Walking & Cooking Tour in Umbria as well as great food presentation, while making sure we taste the best of Umbria’s impressive wines.


For the Vegetable Broth

  • 2 qts. water
  • 1 medium onion
  • 1 large stalk of celery, cut into big chunks
  • 1 carrot, cut into chunks
  • 2 sprigs of fresh parsley
  • 1 small tomato
  • 1 small peeled potato
  • 1 tsp salt

For the Soup

  • ½ lb. farro (spelt)
  • 3 TB. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 stalk of celery, diced
  • 1 carrot, diced
  • 4 small tomatoes, diced
  • 4 slices of bread, toasted
  • pecorino cheese, grated
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • Optional: 2 oz. pancetta, finely diced


Put the spelt in a bowl, cover with cold water and let it soak for at least 6 hours or overnight.   In a large pot, combine the 3 TB of olive oil and the diced vegetables (and optional pancetta), and cook over a low flame until soft.  Drain the spelt and add it to the vegetables, and cover with the hot broth. (You may not need all the broth – the spelt should be covered with the broth by about ½ inch.)  Bring o a boil, then lower the flame and simmer for 45 minutes to 1 hour, until the spelt is soft but not mushy.  (Add more broth if necessary during the cooking.)  Ladle into soup bowls and sprinkle with grated pecorino cheese, or a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and a grating of black pepper. Serve with toasted bread.  While the soup is cooking, sip a glass of  Rosso di Montefalco from Umbria and nibble on a bit of pecorino cheese, then finish the bottle with your soup.  Serves 4.

Buon appetito!