I opened my refrigerator Wednesday morning and looked on my counter and saw lots of produce that needed to be used, but I needed some inspiration. So, I asked for soup or stew suggestions on Instagram, and Jenn responded with minestrone. I hadn’t made minestrone in ages, and it sounded SO comforting that I decided to give it a try. I loosely followed Food52’s “Desperation Minestrone” instructions, but here are the exact measurements and ingredients I used. Hope you give this soup a try. It will really work in any season (and is light enough to be a good spring or summer soup, in my opinion). Just use seasonal veggies to give it a seasonal flair.
Quick, Weeknight Minestrone Soup
serves about 6-8, or 4 with leftovers
adapted from Food52
– 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
– 1 medium onion, diced
– 1/2 butternut squash, diced
– 1/2 cup carrots, chopped
– 1/2 head of cauliflower, cut into small florets
– 3 cloves garlic, minced
– 1 15 oz. can diced tomatoes
– 8 cups chicken stock/veggie stock (I used 4 cups of each)
– 1/8 tsp red pepper flakes (or more, to taste)
– 1 tsp sea salt
– 5 medium mushrooms, sliced
– 2 large handfuls leafy greens (I used spinach)
– 2 tsp dried basil
– 1 tsp dried oregano
– 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, plus some for garnish
– 3/4 of a pound of pasta, cooked al dente
– dash of your favorite hot sauce, optional
1. Put water on to boil for pasta. When water is boiling, add pasta and cook until al dente. Strain and put aside.
2. While water boils and pasta cooks, sauté onion in olive oil over medium-high heat for a minute.
2. Add carrots, butternut squash, and cauliflower. Cook until almost soft.
3. Add minced garlic, and cook until fragrant.
4. Then add tomatoes and allow to simmer for a few minutes.
5. Add chicken stock, red pepper flakes, and salt. Allow to boil, then lower to simmer.
6. Add mushrooms, greens, herbs, and Parmesan. Stir well and allow greens to wilt.
7. Add warm pasta.
8. Serve with parmesan and salt. I added a dash of hot sauce to my bowl, but kept it out of the main pot so the kids would eat it. I actually roughly blended the kids bowls so it more closely resembled “Alphabet soup” in texture, and they readily at it!
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