Minestrone is a hearty Italian vegetable soup made with tomato-y broth and pasta, traditionally made to use up leftover vegetables, so feel free to use any seasonal vegetables and greens you have on hand.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 3 bacon rashers, chopped coarsely
- 1 large brown onion, chopped coarsely
- 1 large carrot, chopped finely
- 2 stalks celery, trimmed, chopped finely
- 3 cloves garlic, crushed
- 1/4 cup (70g) tomato paste
- 2 400g cans crushed tomatoes
- 2 litre chicken stock
- 1 cup (100g) small pasta shells
- 400 gram can chickpeas, drained, rinsed
- 1 bunch spinach, trimmed, leaves chopped coarsely
- 1/2 cup (40g) grated parmesan cheese
- italian bread, to serve
- 1Heat the oil in a large saucepan over a medium-high heat; cook the bacon, stirring, for 2 minutes or until browned lightly. Add the onion, carrot, celery and garlic; cook, stirring, for 5 minutes. Add the paste and tomatoes; cook, stirring, for 2 minutes.
- 2Add stock to pan; bring to the boil. Reduce heat; simmer, covered, for 20 minutes.
- 3Add pasta and chickpeas to pan; bring to the boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for about 8 minutes or until pasta is tender. Stir in spinach, simmer a further minute or until spinach is just wilted. Serve soup sprinkled with cheese and with toasted Italian bread.
Suitable to freeze. Not suitable to microwave.
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