This weekend I made a minestrone soup. Mr Pears didn't seem all that thrilled with the prospect of what we called, "a bland soup", but he...umm...ate his words, lol! This soup is super healthy and packed with a ton of great veggies and beans and a ton of flavor. It does use a few slices of bacon so it is not a typical vegetarian minestrone, but it could be...and I think it would be just as good. I just served it with some garlic french bread, and it was a great meal.
This is definitely a weekend recipe, though, in my opinion. There is lots of chopping to do. But the work does pay off and the recipe made enough soup for us to freeze two batches for later.
So if cutting calories was on your list of resolutions...or if you just want a nice light dinner next week, give this one a try. :)
photo from foodnetwork.com, my darn phone isn't uploading!
Minestrone Soup, adapted from Bobby Flay
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 large red onion, chopped
2-3 stalks of celery, chopped
2-3 large carrots, chopped
4 cloves garlic, chopped
2 slices bacon, chopped
1/2 head of cabbage, sliced thin, and steamed for 2-3 minutes
1/2 bunch kale, destemmed and chopped
4 cups chicken stock
1 can diced tomatoes, drained
1 bouquet garni (1 sprig rosemary, 4 sprigs thyme, 1 bay leaf, tied with kitchen string)
2 cans cannellini beans
salt, pepper, and freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Heat the oil in a large soup pot over medium-high heat and then add the onion, celery, carrots, garlic, and bacon and cook for about 5 minutes while stirring. Add in 4 cups of water along with the stock, cabbage, kale, tomatoes, and bouquet garni. Bring the soup to a boil then turn down the heat and let it simmer together for about 30 minutes.
In the meantime, puree one can of beans in your food processor or blender. After 30 minutes of simmering add the puree and the other can of beans (drained) to the soup, stir it together and let it all cook 10 minutes longer. Taste the soup and season it with salt and pepper.
When you serve the soup sprinkle each portion with some Parmesan cheese. Enjoy!