How to make soffritto


How to make soffritto

by Great British Chefs21 June 2016

How to make soffritto

Soffritto, an aromatic mix of onion, carrot and celery, is the base for most sauces, soups, stews and braises in Italian cuisine. A ratio of 2:1:1 of onion, carrot and celery is generally agreed on, but some regions of Italy prefer to include other aromatics such as garlic, parsley, rosemary and bay. In some instances, bacon or pancetta is also added for an even richer flavour base.

Soffitto is the Italian word for ‘fried slowly’, as after the vegetables have been finely diced they are then gently cooked in a generous amount of olive oil and sometimes butter. Traditionally chopped with a mezzaluna and stirred with a wooden spoon, the soffritto should be cooked until dorata (golden brown). Doing so releases all the flavours from the vegetables, resulting in a rich basis to begin any dish.




Peel and cut the vegetables into a fine dice, roughly 5mm square
Heat a heavy-based saucepan over a gentle heat and add the olive oil
Add the vegetables and cook for around 10 minutes, stirring occasionally until the vegetables are softened and golden but not burnt or crispy
The soffritto is now ready to use


Soffritto will keep happily in a sealed container in the fridge for a few days after cooking and it is easier to make it in large batches as it is less likely to catch. Just be sure to cool it completely before placing in the fridge to prevent it from sweating.

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