Minestrone Soup

Soup weather!  You know what I’m talking about.  The kind of weather that you can’t wait to get in your jammies and call it a day.  Well, our last rainy day called for minestrone soup.  It takes a little time to prepare but then you will have plenty of time to be lazy.  Serve it with warm, garlic bread to complete the goodness.  Feel free to experiment with veggies and noodles.  Stay dry and warm! -Amanda

Minestrone Soup


2 T extra-virgin olive oil

1/4 pound pancetta or thick-cut prosciutto, finely chopped

1 lb. zucchini, cut into strips lengthwise, then cut into small pieces

2 ribs celery, finely chopped

1 onion, finely chopped

2 bay leaves

2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

Salt and pepper

32 ounces  (4 cups) chicken stock

16 ounces (2 cups) chicken broth

15 ounce can cannellini beans, rinsed

15 ounce can  tomato puree

1/4 lb. whole wheat penne or other short-cut pasta

Handful basil, torn into pieces

About 1/2 cup freshly grated parmigiano

In a soup pot, heat the EVOO, over medium-high heat. Add the pancetta and cook until browned, a couple of minutes. Add the zucchini, celery, onion, bay leaves and 2 cloves garlic; season with salt and pepper. Cook until the vegetables are tender, 7 to 8 minutes.

Stir the chicken stock and broth, beans and tomatoes into the soup and bring to a boil. Add the pasta and cook until al dente. Stir in the basil and lower the heat to low.

Serve soup in bowls and top with parmigiano cheese.  Add warm, garlic bread to complete the meal. This soup is thick and full of stuff.  Feel free to add a little more chicken broth to thin out the soup.

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