weekend soup :: minestrone with pesto
as usual i got my young'n involved in the soup making. he goes to a waldorf school and they make soup at school every tuesday, so he's all expert at it. seriously, he cut all the zucchini, potatoes and half the carrots. he also snapped every bean. and the best part is we just hang out together while we cook. we talk. we sing. we tell stories. it's awesome. it's how cooking should be.
to go with our soup, we also made Martha's yummy corn biscuits. Here's a link to that recipe as well.
so, here's our recipe for super-yummy Minestrone Soup! warm up to a bowl, you won't be sorry.
1 can (15 oz.) white beans, rinsed well
salt, to taste
2 tbs. olive oil
2 yellow onions, diced
1/2 cup diced pancetta
3 carrots, peeled, thinly sliced
2 celery stalks, diced
3/4 lb. tomatoes, peeled, seeded and diced, or 1 can (15 oz.) diced tomatoes
5 to 6 cups water or chicken broth, or as needed
4 small new potatoes, peeled, diced
2 zucchini, halved lengthwise and sliced
1/4 lb. green beans, trimmed and snapped to 1" lengths
1/4 lb. small shell pasta or orzo
2 tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
Freshly ground pepper, to taste
TO MAKE THE SOUP: in a large soup pot warm the olive oil over med-high heat. add the onions and cook, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes. add the pancetta and cook, until tender, about 5 minutes more. add the carrots and celery and cook until for 2-3 minutes until slightly soft. add the tomatoes and enough water or stock to cover. bring to a boil, reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer until the tomatoes break down, 10-12 minutes.
meanwhile, place half of the white beans in a food processor or blender with a little broth. puree until smooth.
add the potatoes, zucchini, green beans, white beans (including the puree), and pasta to the pot and simmer until the vegetables and pasta are cooked, about 15 minutes. stir occasionally. season with salt and pepper.
ladle into warmed bowls, add a dollop of pesto (if you desire) and serve immediately.