If you are anything like me you have ingredients laying around in your cupboards that you buy with the intention to try them out someday. You really have no idea what they are for but they look interesting or sound good. Personally, I've had a bag of arborio rice sitting in one of my cupboards for about 5 years now. I'm proud to say that I finally have a use for this ingredient. Best part is that it was much easier to use than I thought it would be.
Another strange ingredient that was new to my aresnal was the parsnip. Think "super carrot". The parsnip is a delicous under-used vegetable. The parsnip is also good as a Tempura vegetable.
When you make this soup, you may look at the small amount of rice and think that it's not enough. I assure you that a little bit of this rice goes a long ways and it makes this soup nice and hearty. Every ingredient in this soup is important since there are so few. Don't forget the parmesan!