Thursday, December 3, 2009

Minestrone Soup, Anyone?

Today is gray and windy, and we may even see a passing snowflake. It's one of those days that demands a piping hot bowl of soup. Here's a great recipe for Minestrone, and you can pick up most of the ingredients at Findlay Market. Add a glass of wine and a loaf of bread, and you'll have a good hearty meal.

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 large onion, chopped

1 large stalk celery, chopped

2 large cloves garlic, minced or pressed

1 teaspoon basil

½ teaspoon each dry rosemary, oregano leaves, thyme leaves

¼ cup pearl barley

2 medium-size thin-skinned potatoes, peeled and diced

1 large carrots, diced

8 cups chicken stock or broth

1 large turnip, peeled and diced

1 can red or white kidney beans

⅔ cup small shell or elbow macaroni

¼ cup tomato paste

2 cups finely shredded kale leaves or green cabbage

Salt and pepper

1½ cups shredded jack cheese

Heat oil in 5-quart pan over medium heat. Add onion, celery, garlic, basic, rosemary, oregano, and thyme; cook about 10 minutes until onion is soft.

Add barley, potatoes, carrots, stock, and turnip. Bring to a boil over high heat; reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 20 minutes.

Mix in beans and their liquid, macaroni, and tomato paste. Bring to a boil over high heat; reduce heat, cover, and boil gently until macaroni is tender (about 15 minutes). Add kale and cook, uncovered, until kale is tender-crisp (about 5 minutes). Season with salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle with cheese.

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