Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Quick Minestrone

Quick Minestrone served with a pimento cheese sandwich and an apple.
Serves 4
Recipe from Everyday Food Magazine
Husband-Tested in Alice’s Kitchen

This is just the simplest soup to make and takes just a few minutes to prepare.  I served it with pimento cheese sandwiches and some apples picked at the orchard.  Make a batch of Banana Chip Chocolate Chip Walnut Cookies and then pack a couple along with this soup and a sandwich for a grand lunchbox meal.

2 teaspoons olive oil
2 carrots, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced crosswise
1 red bell pepper (ribs and seeds removed) cut into ½-inch pieces
8 ounces fresh green beans, stem ends trimmed, cut into 2-inch lengths
3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1/3 whole-wheat couscous
2 cups vegetable broth or chicken broth
2 Tablespoons tomato paste*
2 cups cooked navy beans, rinsed and drained
1 cup water
Kosher salt, to taste
2 Tablespoons basil pesto, optional
Flat leaf parsley, optional
Parmesan cheese, optional

Add the oil to a hot soup pot.  Add the carrots, bell pepper, green beans and garlic to the pot. Season with some salt, to taste.  Stir a bit and let the mixture cook for 2 minutes.  Add the couscous, broth, tomato paste, navy beans and water.  Season the soup with ½ teaspoon salt.  Cover and bring to a boil.  Turn off the heat and allow the soup to set for about 10 minutes.  Stir in a couple of tablespoons of pesto, if you like.  Serve the soup with a sprinkling of Parmesan cheese and parsley, if desired.



Tip:  After opening the jar or can of tomato paste, scoop out what you need for this recipe.  Then scoop out the remaining tomato paste using a 1 Tablespoon measuring spoon and put the tomato paste in an ice cube tray.  Place the tray in the freezer for about 30 minutes.  Then, remove the tray from the freezer and pop out the tomato paste “cubes.”  Place them in a freezer bag, label and then pop the bag in the freezer.  Now, you’ll have tomato paste ready to go into future dishes.

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