Yes! The spring is finally here and it is not so cold outside anymore. Yet, this doesn’t mean that we don’t need soup now! Because soup, especially one which is as colourful and rich as this one, is good for every day, any day!
Minestrone is a thick, chunky Italian soup made with vegetables and most of the time with adding pasta or rice, as well as beans, spinach or kale. There is not one single minestrone soup recipe as it is seasonal and you use whichever vegetables are available at the time. So you can easily change some of the vegetables in this recipe with other ones depending on what you have in the market. I adapted this version from Minimalist Baker blog, but I changed some of the ingredients and some measurements according to my taste.
I’ve also seen the addition of parmesan in many recipes. I don’t know if it is common to use parmesan in minestrone or not. But as this recipe is vegan, there is nutritional yeast instead.
Normally, if you use rice, beans, vegetables etc, the soup is automatically gluten free. In this recipe I used pasta instead of rice, it is gluten free fusilli. There are many gluten free pasta types in the markets nowadays, so you can use gluten free penne or macaroni as well.
One batch of this recipe makes quite a big portion of soup. Therefore most probably you will not be able to eat the whole thing in one meal, unless you are making it for a few of your friends. If you need to reheat some leftover soup, you must be careful, because pasta will get too soft when you reheat. This is why I also recommend you to cook the soup just before your guests arrive, in case you are doing it for some time around a table. In any case, it is a lovely, delicious, rich soup and you will enjoy it happily!
Difficulty: ★☆☆ (Easy)
3 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, diced
4 cloves of garlic, minced
2 big carrots, diced
1 zucchini, diced
1 can (400 gr.) chopped tomatoes with juice
1.5 lt (or 6 cups) water / vegetable broth
1 tbsp nutritional yeast
1 tbsp coconut sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper
2 tsp red pepper flakes
2 tsp dried oregano
2 tsp dried basil
200 gr. gluten free fusilli (or another type of pasta, you can also choose a regular pasta if you don’t need to go gluten free)
1 can (400 gr.) white beans
1 can (200 gr.) green beans, or you can use fresh ones too, chopped
2.5 dl (or 1 cup) fresh basil leaves (or spinach, or kale)
1. In a large pot, put some olive oil and heat it on medium high heat for half a minute. Add onion and saute for about 3-4 minutes, until it is translucent.
2. Add garlic and continue to saute for about 2 more minutes.
3. Add carrots, zucchini, canned tomatoes and mix a little (if you are using fresh green beans, put them at this step too).
4. Add water / broth, nutritional yeast, coconut sugar, salt and pepper and mix a little.
5. Let the soup boil.
6. When the soup is boiling, add red pepper flakes, oregano and basil, stir a little, and lower the heat to medium low to let the soup simmer for about 10 minutes.
7. Add pasta, canned white beans, green beans and basil and continue cooking until pasta is ready. Check the seasoning and add more salt and pepper if needed. Serve the soup fresh so that you don’t have to reheat or else the pasta will get too soft. Enjoy!