I really, really love soup. I may even hoard it a little wee bit in our extra freezer. My favorite soups are usually the ones that are packed with vegetables. I like to get in a few servings in one comforting bowl.
I had never tasted minestrone soup until a few years ago when we were out to dinner. It was the soup of the day at a restaurant. I ordered it only because I was so cold. It was love at first taste. I realized very quickly that this soup is just a vegetable soup with Italian-style seasonings. I like to use marina sauce in the base to give it a rich flavor. The most important part of this recipe however, is the cheese that I stir in to the broth at the end of cooking. It gives the broth a rich, salty complexity.
This soup can easily be made vegetarian by using vegetable stock. It can be gluten free if you just leave out the pasta (I like it better that way). This soup freezes well and makes an excellent work lunch.
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours
Ingredients (8-12 servings)
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion, diced
- 2-3 carrots diced
- orange pepper, diced
- yellow pepper, diced
- 1/2 pound mushrooms, chopped
- 1 Idaho potato, chopped
- 1 sweet potato, chopped
- 16 oz marinara sauce
- 4 cups vegetable or chicen stock
- 12 ounces green beans
- 1/2 bag veggies for soup
- 1 can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
- salt to taste
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon red chili flakes
- parmesan cheese rind
- 2 handfuls parmesan cheese
In a medium stockpot, cook onion over medium until tender in olive oil. Add carrot and cook until tender. Add peppers and mushrooms, cooking until softened.
Add potatoes, green beans, marinara, paprika, chili flakes, and stock. Cook until heated then add veggies for soup.
Allow to simmer with the parmesan rind until all veggies are cooked through.
Add parmesan stirring constantly when combining and beans and cook an additional 10- 20 minutes.
Stir in pre cooked pasta like ditalini before serving.