Monday, 9 November 2020

Minestrone Soup

 Minestrone

This soup is from Italy but can vary from region to region and by season. Like most tasty soups one starts with simmering the bones of chicken or meat for hours with leftover vegetable. The stock or broth which is the most important ingredient in any soup should be clear and packed with flavour since it is the very base of any soup. This could also be vegetarian made up of just root vegetables and some herbs and spice. 
Regions of the north like Lombardy include a small cooked pasta while the south like Tuscany generally enjoy a cannellini beans to their minestrone. 
Minestrone means a thick vegetable soup - the difference between a vegetable soup and a minestrone is the addition of pasta and beans. A drizzle of pesto  can also be added when serving.

To start off with the Italian use their  Sofrito - three basic vegetables of 2 part onion,  1 part celery and 1 part carrot while the French use the same to make their base which is called the Mirepoix. 






Serves 6

4 tbsp olive oil
2 diced onions
6 cloves of garlic
1 cup diced celery 
1 1/2 cups diced carrot 
1  diced zucchini
6 cups of vegetable or chicken stock as needed
3 small fresh tomatoes skinned and diced
Salt, pepper, pinch of sugar and oregano to flavour  
Keep simmering. Just before you serve, add 
1/2 cup cooked mini pasta of choice
1 can beans, cannellini or navy or kidney or white beans 
All these vegetables are going to stay whole so cut them equally and not very tiny.
Parmesan to serve with.


In a soup pot heat 4 tbsp olive oil add and saute`2 diced onions. Continue to add the garlic, celery, carrot and mix well.
Lastly add the zucchini as you don't want it over cooked.
Add the stock of choice bring it all to a boil and add 3 small fresh tomatoes skinned and diced. 
Salt, pepper and oregano to flavour.  
Keep simmering for 20 minutes. 
Just before you serve, add 
1/2 cup cooked mini pasta of choice
1 can beans, cannellini or navy or kidney or white beans  - rinsed under cold water in a sieve

Tips
All these vegetables are going to stay whole so cut them equally and not very tiny.
Rinsing the beans in cold water is important to keep them from becoming a mush.
Grated parmesan  is traditional to serve with. Try garlic cheese toast with it to complete the meal. 

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