Happy New Year, everyone and may 2011 be a wonderful year for you all! For my very first post of 2011, I'd like to share a recipe for Minestrone Soup. It is definitely soup weather here and I look forward to many more soup nights in our home this winter.
I found this Minestrone recipe at Chicho's Kitchen, a wonderful food blog. My husband and I love it! I have made only a few minor adaptions. It's a delicious soup, thickened with pureed Cannelini beans and simmered with beef stock. If you wish, you could use vegetable stock to keep it completely vegetarian.You will find the recipe below.
Blogging has become such a wildly popular phenomenon in the past few years. Don't you wonder if we'll still be blogging when the next decade begins, or, will there be a new way of sharing and connecting with other Foodies? It will be interesting!
Adapted from Chicho's Kitchen
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
3 carrots, peeled and chopped
3 celery stalks, chopped
1/2 celery root, peeled and cut into small cubes
1 russet potato, peeled and cut into small cubes
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 lb Swiss chard, large stems and center vein removed and leaves coarsely chopped
1 28-oz can San Marzano plum tomatoes, chopped, juice reserved
1 fresh rosemary sprig
2 15-oz cans cannellini beans, drained and rinsed (I have also used 1 can of Cannelini and one can of Lentils)
1 32-oz container no-sodium beef stock (I like Kitchen Basics brand). You could substitute vegetable stock for a vegetarian soup.
1 oz piece Parmesan cheese rind
1/2 cup Ditalini pasta, or other tiny pasta
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley leaves
Salt and pepper to taste
Heat the oil in a heavy large pot over medium heat. Add the onion, carrots, celery, and garlic. Saute until the onion is translucent, about 10 minutes. Add the Swiss chard, potato and celery root and saute for 4 minutes. Add the tomatoes, reserved tomato juice and rosemary sprig. Simmer until the chard is wilted and the tomatoes start to break down, about 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, blend 1 can of the beans with 1/2 cup of the broth in a food processor until almost chunky/smooth. Add the pureed bean mixture, remaining broth, and Parmesan cheese rind to the vegetable mixture. Simmer until the potato pieces are tender, stirring occasionally, about 25-30 minutes. Stir in the whole beans and parsley and simmer until the beans are heated through and the soup is thick, about 2 minutes more. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Remove the Parmesan rind and rosemary sprig, and serve.