Vegetable Soup (Minestrone)

This is another Cerrato household favorite. So YUMMY and good for you. It’s delicious on a rainy or cold winter day!

This classic vegetable soup can be altered using a variety of different vegetables and made with or without pasta. Sometimes we make it with peas, other times with chopped zucchini. We buy the blocks of fresh, Parmigiano Reggiano cheese and when we’re close to the end, I save the rinds in a ziploc bag in the freezer and throw them in our soups. They add a lot of flavor! You can make the soup hours before you’re going to eat it because the longer it sits, the better it tastes. That is a fact!

Ingredients:

  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 2 organic carrots, peeled and diced
  • 2 organic celery stalks, diced (use the leaves too, they add lots of flavor)
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 medium organic potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 1 cup chopped canned organic tomatoes
  • 2 (15oz.) can of cannelini beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 (15oz.) can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas (optional)
  • 2 small organic zucchini, diced (optional)
  • 1 small Parmigiano Reggiano cheese rind
  • seasonings: dried oregano and fresh parsley

Instructions:

  1. Cover the bottom of a large pot with extra virgin olive oil. Add onions, carrots, celery, garlic and potatoes. Saute for a few minutes until vegetables are slightly soft, stirring frequently and being careful not to brown.
  2. Add tomatoes, cannelini beans, chickpeas and peas (or zucchini) and cover all of the vegetables with water, with a little extra to give plenty of space for the vegetables to cook. Add Parmigiano Reggiano rind and salt. Bring to a boil. Add some dried oregano and fresh parsley. Simmer for 30 minutes on low heat.
  3. Optional: My husband enjoys a little pasta in his Minestrone so you can boil some small pasta, such as ditalini, in a small pot and add it to the bottom of your soup dish. Bon appetito!
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