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Minestrone Soup

November 29, 2010

In keeping with our tradition of soups on Mondays, we made Minestrone tonight, a very easy soup to make and super delicious. I snagged this recipe back in high school from a cookbook my mom got during an Italian cooking program in England, I have since modified so here it goes:

Minestrone Soup

1 sweet onion
1 large carrot
3 cloves garlic
2 stalks of celery
1 small zucchini (or half a large)
3/4 cup frozen green beans
1/2 cup frozen peas
1 28oz can of diced tomatoes
Olive Oil
a few leaves fresh basil
Salt and pepper to taste
Tortellini

Chop up the onions and carrots

Toss into a large pot with around 2 Tablespoons of Olive Oil

Dice up the celery and zucchini (I just used half a zucchini since we had such a large one, the other half to appear manana)

Add the beans and peas

Add the garlic and basil

Crushed using the handy dandy garlic press, I couldn’t live without this kitchen gadget

And when I don’t want to buy a big bunch of basil from the store I use these little frozen pods from Dorot. They sell them in the freezer section (Trader Joes and Stop’n’Shop have them)  and they are so handy, one little cube is equal to about a tablespoon of fresh group herbs. I used the basil, but they also make cilantro and garlic, super handy if you don;t want to buy the fresh.

Add Salt and Pepper to taste

And finally the can of diced tomatoes. I accidentally bought the whole tomatoes, so I cut them up with scissors, apparently I am one of the few people who uses scissors in the kitchen, but they are amazing (cutting pizza, hot cheesy garlic bread, snipping the ends off green beans, etc.). I highly suggest putting a pair to use in the kitchen, oxo makes great ones.

7. Cover and simmer on medium-high for 15 minutes. This allows all the flavors from the veggies to come out

After 15 minutes add water. I use the tomatoes can to measure, adding 1.5 cans full of water

Cook on low for another 45-60 minutes. I use the carrots as a test, if they are tender, then the soup is done.

There are lots of different types of starches to add to this soup, I usually add three cheese tortellini, but you can also add plain pasta (rotini or penne) or potatoes.Tonight I went with the tortellini.

Top the soup with the tortellini and garnish with some Parmesan cheese. I also made up some cheesy garlic bread and salad to go on the side and round out the meal. Garn.ish with a nice Pinot Noir and boom an easy and tasty dinner for a Monday night.

This recipe makes a lot of soup, but it only gets better with age. I do however recommend storing the tortellini separate from the soup to avoid SPS, Soggy Pasta Syndrome.

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The real question is, how do you all pronounce Minestrone, like a good Italian? Or do you say Minestroney? I say Minestrone, but I am always tempted to say Minestroney!

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