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Cheese and bread soup (zuppa di formaggi)

This simple Italian soup takes the most humble of ingredients and combines them into a rich dish perfect for the winter months.

By Emma Knowles & Lisa Featherby
  • 15 mins preparation
  • 45 mins cooking plus making stock
  • Serves 8
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You'll need to begin this recipe a day ahead.


  • 400 gm crusty white bread, thickly sliced, left at room temperature overnight to dry
  • 2 garlic cloves, halved
  • 1.5 litres (6 cups) veal stock
  • 250 ml dry white wine
  • 1 tsp thyme
  • 150 gm Fontina, coarsely grated
  • 150 gm Münster or Emmenthal, coarsely grated
  • 100 gm parmesan, finely grated


  • 1
    Preheat oven to 180C. Rub bread slices with cut sides of one garlic clove (discard garlic) and set aside.
  • 2
    Bring stock, wine and thyme to the boil in a saucepan over high heat, season generously with finely ground black pepper, add sea salt to taste.
  • 3
    Rub the inside of a 3½-litre casserole with remaining garlic (discard garlic), layer with bread and cheese, finishing with a scatter of cheese, then pour over stock mixture and bake, pushing bread down occasionally, until cheese is melted and bread is golden on top (30-40 minutes). Serve hot.