Tuesday, February 03, 2009
Soup-it's what's for dinner. Really, people don't seem to eat much soup and yet it is cheap, filling, nutritious and can be quick. Most people I know consider it a possible weekend lunch or something to have when you're sick. My family eats soup weekly if not more often. It stretches a little bit of meat a mile and if done in the crockpot it's easy peasy. We even have potato or broccoli soup so no meat is needed at all. Here's my minestrone recipe which is well, very good, if I do say so myself.
It is supposed to make 2 batches but it's one for our family with some left for the next day's lunch.
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
1 can (28 ounces) crushed tomatoes
1 can (16 ounces) kidney beans, rinsed and drained
1 can (15 ounces) garbanzo beans or chickpeas, rinsed and drained
2 cups tomato juice
1 can (15 ounces) tomato sauce
1 can (14-1/2 ounces) beef broth
3 medium carrots, chopped
1 medium zucchini, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced
1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
1 to 1-1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon sugar, optional
1/8 teaspoon pepper
ADDITIONAL INGREDIENTS (for each batch):
1/2 cup water
1 cup uncooked small pasta
In a Dutch oven, cook the celery, onion and garlic over medium heat until meat is no longer pink; drain.
Stir in the tomatoes, beans, tomato juice, tomato sauce, broth, carrots, zucchini, Italian seasoning, salt, sugar if desired and pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 30-35 minutes or until carrots are tender.
Transfer 6 cups of soup to a freezer container; freeze for up to 3 months. Add water and pasta to remaining soup; bring to a boil. Cover and cook until pasta is tender.
To use frozen soup: Thaw in the refrigerator; transfer to a large saucepan. Stir in water. Bring to a boil; reduce heat. Add pasta; cover and cook until tender. Yield: 2 batches (6 servings each).