Monday, September 26, 2011

Healthy Minestrone Soup - Vegetarian

If you love Italian food, if you're a fan of Olive Garden, you're sure to love Minestrone Soup. It's very flexible in that you can add whatever veggies you have in hand, just add macaroni cooked al dente and don't forget the red beans and/or white beans. Very healthy and delicious. Bon Appetit!

Vegetarian Minestrone Soup

What I Used -

Elbow Macaroni - 2 handfuls
Red Kidney beans / Rajma - 2 handfuls (Soak overnight with triple the volume of water)
Olive Oil - 2 tsp
Red Onion - 1
Garlic - 2 cloves
Carrot - 1
Frozen Mixed vegetables (Beans, Peas, Corn and it had carrots of course!) - 2 handfuls
Celery - 4 stalks (chopped)
Ripe Tomatoes - 4
Mixed Italian herbs (dried) - 1 tbsp
Ground Black Pepper - 1 tsp
Salt - to taste (~ 3/4 tsp + 3/4 tsp)
Water - as required

Feel free to add -

Navy beans/White beans - a handful or 2
Potato -1 (small cubes)
Zucchini -1 (half lengthwise and slice)
Bell pepper/capsicum - 1 (diced)
Baby spinach (finely chopped)

How I Made Minestrone Soup -

  • In a large pot (Small pressure cooker pan works for me! ), sauté chopped onions and garlic in olive oil for 3 minutes on medium flame. 
  • When the onions are a little softer, add celery, carrots, beans, peas and corn  (all chopped vegegies) and sauté for 2 minutes. 
  • Finely chop 1 tomato and add to the pan.
  • Extract the juice of 3 tomatoes in a blender and add to the pan.
  • Add the soaked Red kidney beans, salt, pepper, Italian herbs and pour about 1 1/2 to2 cups of water.
  • Pressure cook for 3 whistles and switch off. 
    • If you do not have a pressure-cooker, use a slow cooker, so that the flavors evolve and mix well.

  • In the mean time, cook pasta (Elbow macaroni or other) in salted water until al dente. Don't overcook the pasta. This is precisely why we did not add the pasta to the pressure-cooker!

  • Add the cooked pasta to the veggies sauce and heat on medium flame for 3-5 minutes (Need not boil). 
Minestrone Soup

Serve your minestrone soup with some fresh Garlic bread :)

Variation : You could use alphabet-shaped pasta and your kids can have some fun while they eat nutritious food!

This is my entry to Soups and Salads Mela hosted by Srivalli and Global Food Festival at Sizzling Tastebuds

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