Quick Minestrone

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A hearty minestrone does not always require hours on the stove. This one takes about an hour, start to finish. Some of the prep can be done while the soup is simmering.

 

MAKES: 4 to 6 Servings
PREP/COOK TIME: 55 minutes

  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 large carrot, chopped
  • 1 stick celery, chopped (optional)
  •  Salt to taste
  • 4 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 28-ounce can chopped tomatoes, with juice
  • 8 cups Magic Mineral Broth
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon oregano
  • 1 medium Yukon gold potato (about 6 ounces), diced
  •  A bouquet garni made with a bay leaf, a couple of sprigs each parsley and thyme, and a Parmesan rind (optional – but it does add flavor; use what you have for this)
  • ½ pound kale, stemmed, washed thoroughly, and chopped or cut in slivers (4 cups chopped)
  • 1 can white beans, drained and rinsed
  •  Freshly ground pepper
     Grated Parmesan for serving

PREPARATION

  1. Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a large, heavy soup pot and add the onion, carrot, and celery and a pinch of salt. Cook, stirring often, until the vegetables are tender, about 8 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in the tomatoes and juice from the can, add another pinch of salt and cook, stirring often, for 5 to 10 minutes, until the tomatoes have cooked down slightly.
     
  2. Add the water, tomato paste, oregano, potato, and salt to taste. Bring to a boil, add the bouquet garni, cover and simmer 10 to 15 minutes, until the potatoes are just about tender.
     
  3. Add the kale and simmer another 10 minutes, until the kale and potatoes are tender and the soup is fragrant. Taste, adjust salt, and add pepper. Stir in the beans and heat through for 5 minutes. Serve, sprinkling some Parmesan over each bowl.

Storage The soup tastes even better on the second day, and will keep for 4 to 5 days in the refrigerator. It freezes well. I've used small amounts of leftovers as a pasta sauce, adding a little tomato paste to thicken.

Adapted from one of Martha Rose Shulman's amazing recipes

 

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