Hearty Minestrone

September 21, 2015

 

The first time I ever had Minestrone was at the Olive Garden. When I was a little girl, I took dance classes in the city, about 45 minutes from home. A few times a year, after practice my dad would treat me to the Olive Garden. My family didn’t go out to eat much, so this was pretty big deal; not to mention, any daddy-daughter alone time in a family of 9 was like a holiday. I still remember my first time there with my dad super clearly. We had a window seat, I got a raspberry lemonade, and we gorged ourselves on soup, salad, and breadsticks. It was bomb-dot-com.

Fast forward 20 years, my goodness time flies, and the soup-salad-breadstick affair continues. Now a husband-wife tradition. For Andrew and I, this certainly isn’t something that occurs only at the Olive Garden. We certainly don’t have enough chump change to make that a regular occurrence, and homemade soup and bread put the restaurant grub to shame any way. So when Andrew requested minestrone and pretzel bread for lunch, I was more than happy to oblige.

 

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Chock full of veggies and fresh herbs, this soup is definitely a meal I feel good about eating. It doesn’t hurt that it is literally one of the easiest recipes ever. Chop up your veggies and throw them all in a pot and you are good to go! We made plenty so we would have left overs for the week…or the next two days. Seriously, it is that good! I made some pretzel rolls to pair with it and they turned out beautifully – golden brown and crispy on the outside and fluffy on the inside. I’m starting the Whole30 plan tomorrow, so you better believe I ate at least 5 of those bad boys. No apologies here.

XOXO – Emmy Lou Lou

 

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Hearty Minestrone

  • Servings: 6-8
  • Time: 45 minutes
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print

Ingredients:
• 2 Tablespoons olive oil
• 1 white onion, chopped
• 1 ½ cupt celery diced
• 1 cup carrots diced
• 4-5 cloves garlic, minced
• 4 cups vegetable stock
• 3 cups water
• 2 cans diced tomatoes
• 2 tablespoons tomato paste
• 1 can kidney beans
• 1 can white beans
• 1 cup frozen green beans
• 2 ½ cups kale, chopped
• 1 potato diced
• 1 small zucchini
• 3 ½ tablespoons fresh parsley
• ¾ teaspoon fresh thyme
• 1 sprig rosemary
• 2 bay leaves
• Salt and pepper to taste
• 1 oz parmesan rind

Directions:
• In a large stockpot over medium-high heat, cook onion in oil for 3 minutes.
• Add carrots, celery, and garlic and cook for an additional 4 minutes.
• Pour stock and water into pot.
• Add remaining ingredients and cook on medium for 30 minutes.
• Remove bay leaves, sprig of rosemary, and remaining cheese rind.
• Serve warm with fresh grated parmesan cheese if desired.

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