Monday, May 24, 2010


Some days are soup days. Especially in the fall and spring, when we have so many in-between days--one day will be nice, and the next...well, not so nice. Those days, when it's cold and rainy (or even snowy), call for soup. It warms the soul and makes the days seem less disappointing. Soup just does that. We've had a lot of those days lately...spring has been slow in coming this year. We put our tomato plants in just this week, even though they can usually go in safely after Mother's Day here in Utah. (I know, I know...just two extra weeks. But that is two extra weeks we have to wait for garden tomatoes!)

Needless to say, we've had lots of soup. This minestrone, though, is great all year. It's light enough that you don't feel overwhelmed when it's warm outside, but nice and hot when it's cool outside.

Adapted from Michael Chiarello on the Food Network
Printable Recipe

olive oil
1 small yellow onion, chopped
3-4 carrots, chopped
2-3 stalks celery, chopped
1 tablespoon fresh thyme, chopped (I used lemon thyme from my garden)
4 cups chicken stock
1 pint tomato juice (2 cups)
1 pint bottled chopped tomatoes
2-3 small zucchini, chopped
1 cup small pasta (I used elbow macaroni because that's what I had. Mini shells would also be good)
1 14-oz can white bean, rinsed
freshly grated parmesan

Heat a few tablespoons of olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the onions, carrots, and celery. Saute until softened. Add the chopped herbs and saute for another 30 seconds until fragrant. Add the chicken stock, tomato juice, chopped tomatoes, zucchini, pasta, and white beans. Bring to a boil and cook for 8-10 minutes until the pasta is cooked through. Taste for seasoning, and salt and pepper if necessary (It might not be; canned tomatoes and beans often have enough sodium).

Serve with freshly grated parmesan.

Easy. But, be warned that it takes a little while for everything to come to a boil, so don't think this is a twenty-minute dinner, even if all your chopping is done.

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