Soup is one of the best one-pot meals. This hearty minestrone makes a perfect feast if you're staying in a hostel with friends or even cooking for your host when using a hospitality website.
This Italian minestrone soup does have a large number of ingredients, but it pays back any effort by tasting fantastic. To serve, add some wholegrain farm bread and a garden salad. This recipe serves 6 to 8 diners.
For the minestrone soup
- 1 medium chopped onion
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 medium leek, white and light green parts only. Cleaned and sliced into1/2-inch slices
- 2 medium carrots, peeled and sliced into 1/3-inch rings
- 1 celery stalk sliced into 1/3-inch slices
- 10 cups of vegetable stock or water
- 3 minced garlic cloves
- 1/4 shredded small head green cabbage, about 2 to 3 cups
- 1 parsnip, peeled and cut into 1/3-inch rings
- 1 medium potato scrubbed and chopped into 1/2-inch pieces
- 1 14-oz can of chopped tomatoes with juice
- 1 peeled and chopped turnip
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 tablespoon of chopped fresh oregano
- 1 heel or rind of Parmesan cheese
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 1 15-ounce drained and rinsed can of cannellini beans
- 1/2 cup frozen peas
- 1/4 pound fresh or frozen green beans cut into 1-inch pieces to make 1 cup
- 1 cup pasta; preferrably elbow macaroni, small shells, broken spaghetti or linguine
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese to pass
- 1 cup Pesto
For the pesto
- 3 cups clean basil leaves
- 2 peeled garlic cloves
- 1/2 cup toasted pine nuts
- 3/4 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
- Salt to taste
Preparing this hearty minestrone soup:
Heat a large Dutch oven with the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion, leek, carrots and celery and cook until the onion is somewhat tender but not browned, about 10 minutes. Now put in the cabbage and garlic, stir for 2 minutes until the cabbage wilts.
Pour in the vegetable stock or water, parsnip, potato, turnip, bay leaf, tomatoes with the juice, Parmesan rind, and oregano. Let the ingredients come to a boil and add the salt. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 45 minutes.
Stir in the cannellini beans. If making the soup ahead of time, stop now and put the soup in some Tupperware and refrigerate.
When you're ready to serve the minestrone, increase the heat to medium and let it gently boil. Now add the peas, green beans, and pasta. Cook for 10 minutes, until the pasta is al dente. Add salt and pepper to taste and serve with grated Parmesan cheese and some pesto.
This recipe makes 1 to 1 1/3 cup.
In a food processor bowl, process the basil and garlic until you get a rough puree. Now slowly add the olive oil, cheese, and pine nuts. Season with salt to taste. Serve the pesto right away or refrigerate, put a layer of olive oil on top to preserve the color.
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