I am slowly adjusting to my new role as an online teacher, but sometimes I find myself missing the four walls of a classroom that I have known. With so much change happening, I was craving a comfortable and familiar meal. My mother made this minestrone for me growing up. My siblings and dad always preferred a beef stew, so when she made minestrone, it was generally with me in mind. This soup is like a warm hug from my childhood and was exactly what I needed today.This minestrone is the “summer” version in my opinion. In the winter months, I do not include zucchini or green beans. I generally use a cannellini bean and possibly some potatoes in the winter months. You also could add a bit more oil/butter to add some richness in colder months. This recipe is truly one of my all time favorite meals!
- 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tbsp butter
- 1 medium onion
- 4 cloves garlic finely chopped
- 2 stalks celery, chopped
- 2 carrots, chopped
- 1 zucchini, chopped
- 14.5 oz can finely chopped/crushed tomatoes
- 1 – 1 1/2 cups chopped fresh green bean
- 32 ounces chicken/vegetable broth
- 1 cup cooked pasta, I use a small cut like ditalini
- 1 cup water
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp dried basil
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp garlic salt
- black pepper to taste
- 2 sprigs fresh thyme
- 1 sprig fresh rosemary
- parmesan for garnish
- Heat oil and butter in a large heavy bottom pot. Add onion and sauté until it becomes translucent. Add carrot, celery, and garlic to the pan. Stir ingredients together and cook a few minutes. Add zucchini. Add salt, pepper, basil, garlic salt, and oregano. Cover and cook on medium high heat until vegetables become soft (about 10 minutes).
- Add tomatoes and their juices to the pot. Combine all ingredients together and cook a few minutes to combine flavors. Add the broth and water. You can add a little extra broth or water (or even some white wine) if it seems less. Add rosemary and thyme. Bring the soup to a boil. Cover the soup and reduce heat. Simmer for 30-45 mins.
- Add the green beans to the soup. Check seasoning. Add more salt or pepper to taste. Continue cooking another 20 mins or so.
- To serve, put 3 tbsp cooked pasta in a bowl, cover with one serving of soup, top with shaved parmesan.
Note: If you store the pasta in the soup or cook the pasta directly in the soup, it will soak up all of the broth. It is best to keep it separate.