+ Well Nourished | Winter Minestrone Soup recipe

Winter Minestrone soup

Celebrate the end of winter with one last bowl of nourishing soup to farewell this season’s best.  This is actually more a meal than a soup.  I love to make this when I have a glut of vegetables in the fridge or if I’m after a hearty, but simple warming meal.  Another delicious and nutritious one pot wonder.

Why is it so good?
The sheer variety of seasonal vegetables combined with cannellini beans is enough to make this a very healthy, fibre loaded meal.  If you use a homemade bone broth for the stock, then you are going to derive even more nutrition from this minestrone.  For more about the healing powers of bone broth, see here.

Serves 6

Ingredients
1 large onion, peeled and finely diced
2 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
4 rashers nitrate free bacon, diced
2 carrots, peeled and diced
2 sticks celery, sliced
Small bunch basil, leaves picked and stems finely chopped
2 x 400gram tins diced tomatoes
100ml red wine
1 large or 2 small zucchinis, diced
1 x 425gram can of cannellini beans, drained and well rinsed
200gram silver beet or spinach leaves well washed and chopped
600ml of stock (homemade is preferable), chicken or vegetable.  For more on making your own, click here.
50gram spaghetti, broken into pieces (put it in a plastic bag and break it up by hand or by bashing with a rolling pin)

Method

  1. Start by cutting up all of your vegetables.
  2. In a large pot or saucepan, heat a little butter or ghee and over a low heat cook the onion, garlic, bacon, carrots, celery and basil stalks.  You are not frying, rather sweating the vegetables and bacon with the lid ajar for around 15-20 minutes until they are starting to soften (but not brown).
  3. Now add the tomatoes and red wine and simmer for about a further 5 minutes.
  4. Next, add the cannellini beans, silver beet or spinach, zucchini, spaghetti and stock.
  5. Turn up the heat to a moderate temperature and simmer until the spaghetti is cooked.
  6. Season with sea salt and pepper to taste.
  7. Serve with basil leaves, a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and parmesan cheese.  Leftovers can be frozen.

Variations
Vegetarian
Use vegetable stock, and don’t add the bacon.  You may like to increase the amount of beans.

Gluten and grain free
Use gluten free pasta or quinoa or just omit the pasta all together.

Dairy free
Just don’t add the cheese.

Your kids don’t like vegetables?
Blend it all up in a food processor.  It will still be delicious and what they don’t know won’t hurt them!  I have even served this to my kids and when they have baulked at (usually the zucchini), I take it away and quickly blend it and they are then happy to eat it because it tastes so good.  You can alway omit any of the offenders too.

This is a favourite winter warmer in our household – more a meal than a starter.  Love to receive your thoughts and comments too. 

 

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  • Paula

    YUM – just what I need to keep those winter chills away this week 🙂

  • Lucy

    Yum! I will be making this one tonight! x

  • jude

    Wow delicious!!! Another beautiful recipe from my favourite food website. Thank you
    . X

    • Oh thanks Jude, you’re very welcome. This is an old fave of mine, so glad you liked it too. G x

  • Rebecca

    Made this one tonight and it was a hit with all 3 children…and was easy, easy, easy!!!

    • It’s a great easy yet hearty soup, glad they liked it! G x

  • Kate

    This was a hit with my fussy kids. I did have to blitz it for them. What was so surprising was the light and refreshing taste. I didn’t have stock or fresh basil so I added a bay leaf and dried basil to the root vege and bacon. Than added just water at the stock stage. Thank you for sharing.

  • Linda Robinson

    Yay, my vegie hater was won over by this too…big relief because I took a gamble and doubled the amount so I could freeze servings for lunches!!!

    • Phew – I’ve had a few people tell me this, glad you all liked it. Must have been a huge pot, perfect for freezing though (actually had it for lunch from the freezer myself yesterday) G x

  • Katie

    So yummy Georgia, we make this a lot. Good with a dollop of pesto in too!

  • Absolutely Katie – perfect for a good pesto for sure Gx

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