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RECIPE:  MINESTRONE SOUP

A classic for chilly days…and an easy way to get a lot of veggies in you and the kids.

With the beans and veggies, this delivers enough protein and vitamins to stand as a meal on its own – making it great as a satisfying lunch and/or those evening where you just want to have a light supper.

PREP TIME:  10-15 min

COOK TIME:  30-45 min

SERVES:   6

INGREDIENTS
FOR COOKING:
  • 1 sachet TASTE OF TUSCANY spice blend

  • 2 TBSP (30 ml) olive oil

  • One 14 oz (400 g) can diced tomatoes

  • One 14 oz (400 g) can white beans

  • 4 cups (1 L) vegetable or chicken broth (bouillon)

  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped

  • 1 celery stalk, chopped 

  • 1 zucchini (courgette) chopped

  • 1 carrot, peeled & chopped

  • 1 tsp salt (or to taste)

  • ½ tsp black pepper

TO SERVE:
  • Grated parmesan cheese

  • Toasted whole grain or sourdough bread

COOKING INSTRUCTIONS
CONVENTIONAL STOVETOP METHOD

 

1)  Add TASTE OF TUSCANY spice blend and olive oil to a 3 QT / 3 L pot and cook for 1 minute over medium high heat, to activate the flavours.

 

2)  Add the rest of the soup ingredients, bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer, covered, for a minimum of 45 minutes.

 

NOTE:  the longer you simmer, the deeper the flavour.

WONDERBAG METHOD

If you have a Wonderbag, you can enjoy hands-free, energy-free slow cooking and let the pot sit in the Wonderbag all day for maximum flavour development.

 

1)  Add TASTE OF TUSCANY spice blend and olive oil to a 3 QT or 3 L pot and cook for 1 minute over medium high heat, to activate the spices’ flavors

 

2)  Add the rest of the soup ingredients, bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer, covered, for 10 minutes.

 

3)  Seal your lidded pot in the Wonderbag for a minimum of 3 hours (can be left all day) to finish cooking.

SERVE

Spoon into bowls, garnish with grated parmesan cheese and a piece of toasted bread (great for crunch and dunking into the soup).

You can also serve this over cooked brown rice, barley, millet or quinoa to increase the fibre count and make it more filling if you've got big eaters in the house!

Recipe & Photo Credit:  Cathy Menees

COOK'S NOTES

INGREDIENTS

Soup is so popular in Netherlands you can buy bags of pre-washed, pre-chopped veggies, so for the Dutchies (or anyone who has that in their supermarket), you can substitute the bell pepper, zucchini, and carrot for a 1lb or 500 g bag of fresh veggies.

PREP TIME

5 minutes  if you buy pre-cut veggies, 10 minutes if you are working with whole ingredients.

COOKING STEP

I have found that cooking the spices first in olive oil kicks off the caramelization process, so you just get a deeper, sweeter flavor into the soup.  But when you’re in a hurry, you can skip step 1 and chuck all of the ingredients into the pot at once.  

Chickpea and Quinoa Tabbouleh