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Minestrone Soup

October 12, 2012
by Shannon Hepburn

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 strips bacon, finely chopped (omit this for a vegetarian soup)
  • 1 clove garlic, peeled and chopped
  • 1 red onion, peeled and finely chopped
  • 2 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 2 sticks celery, chopped
  • 1 zucchini chopped
  • 1 small leek, washed and chopped
  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 - 13.5 ounce cans plum tomatoes chopped (or any sort of tomato you have on hand)
  • 1 large potato, scrubbed and diced
  • 1 - 15.5 ounce can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed (or your favorite bean)
  • 4 cups chicken stock or vegetable stock
  • large handfull of kale, stems removed and chopped
  • ½ cup pasta shapes (rotini, penne or even broken up spaghetti)
  • salt to taste
  • pepper to taste
  • 5 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese (optional)
  1. Heat a large pot over a medium heat and add a lug of olive oil. Throw in the bacon and fry it gently until it starts to turn brown and smell fantastic. Add the garlic, onion, carrots, celery, zucchini, leek, oregano and bay leaf and cook slowly for about 15 minutes, stirring now and then, until the vegetables have softened.
  2. Add the tomatoes, potato, chick peas and vegetable broth, then cover with a lid and bring everything slowly to the boil. Simmer for about 30 minutes, then check (with the tip of a paring knife) that the potato is soft and cooked through.
  3. After that, add the kale and pasta, and cook for 10 more minutes, until the pasta is cooked. If the soup is too thick for you after cooking the pasta, thin it with a little more broth or water.
  4. Finish by seasoning with a little salt and black pepper and pass the Parmesan around the table for people to sprinkle on their soup.
  5. Serves 8