Minestrone

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This is the very first soup I ever learned to make.  I tore the recipe out of a magazine about a decade ago.  I only had one child, and he was still a little guy at the time.  I had written on the recipe that it took me 20-30 minutes to chop all the vegetables.  Thankfully that isn’t the case any longer!  From the very first time that I made this I subbed sweet potato for the potato.  At the time, I just didn’t care for the taste of potatoes.  Nowadays, show me a potato roasted with a whole chicken, smothered in olive oil, sprinkled with sea salt and I am all over it.  But in making this soup, the sweet potato has been a constant.  At some point I swapped chickpeas for the original cannellini beans and added some frozen peas.  I’ve been making it this way ever since.  The first time I make it each fall my daughter squeals with delight.  I don’t squeal, but I’m just as happy that it’s back for lunch as she is.

IMG_6141Pull out a sweet potato, onion, stalk of celery, carrot, zucchini, cup of frozen peas, can of chickpeas, can of diced tomatoes with italian herbs, and chicken stock.  (My stock is homemade, you can’t buy it here in Israel, but the boxed stuff works just fine.)  Alternatively, if I can’t find a can of diced tomatoes, I just chop up whatever kind I have on hand.

IMG_6142Dice the onion, slice the celery, quarter and slice the carrot.  Heat up your soup pot with about 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil.  Throw in the onion, celery, and carrot.  IMG_6143Season with a bit of salt and pepper.  Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally.  If it’s browning too quickly, lower the heat.  Cook for about 8 minutes, until softened.

IMG_6145While the vegetables are cooking, chop up the zucchini, peel and chop the sweet potato, drain and rinse the chickpeas.  Once the onion, celery, carrots have softened up, add everything else into the pot.  Raise the heat, bring to a boil.  Then lower the heat and simmer for 10 minutes.

Minestrone

  • 1 medium onion
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 celery stalk
  • 1 zucchini
  • 1 sweet potato
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can diced tomatoes, italian seasoning
  • 2 1/2 cups chicken stock, preferably low sodium
  • 2 T olive oil
  1. Dice the onion, carrot, and celery.
  2. Saute in olive oil over medium heat, until softened.
  3. While the vegetables are softening, peel and chop the sweet potato, chop the zucchini, drain and rinse the chickpeas.
  4. When the onion, carrot, and celery are softened, add everything else to the pot.
  5. Add 2 1/2  cups water.  Raise the heat, simmer for 10 minutes.  Or until sweet potatoes are tender.
  6. Season with salt and pepper to taste, top with parmesan.  Add fresh torn basil leaves, if desired.

One of my favorite things to do with this soup is to store individual servings in glass jars.  Then I can freeze them for future lunches.  Just thaw overnight in the refrigerator.

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