Last week the weather here in the bay area cooled down significantly and I was craving a good hearty vegetable soup! My craving manifested as a dream!
Soup is one of those dishes where you can throw your favorite things in a pot, add the stock of your choice, and voila!
I decided to go through my fridge and pantry to see what I had. I found canned kidney beans, canned diced tomatoes, farfalle pasta, chicken broth and chicken bouillon cubes. Checked my veggie drawer in the fridge and found celery and carrots that were on the verge of ruining. I thought, let’s see what I can turn this into.
Here is what you’ll need:
1 14.5 oz can of kidney beans
1 14.5 oz can of petite diced tomatoes
8 oz of farfalle pasta
5 small size celery stalks
6 cloves of garlic (trust me)
1 bay leaf
1 48 oz box of chicken broth + 2 cups of water
1 tsp salt
1 tsp ground black pepper
1 tsp dried oregano
2 tbs grape seed oil
*Vegan substitutions: replace the chicken broth with vegetable broth, the chicken bouillon cube for a vegetable bouillon cube, and the pasta for a vegan pasta. Oh and a vegan cheese.*
Let’s get cooking!
For this recipe I used my Dutch oven, but any large pot will do.
Begin by dicing the carrots, celery and garlic.
Next, heat the 2 tbs of oil on medium heat until hot. Then add in your vegetables, salt, pepper and oregano. Cook until the onions are translucent and the carrots and celery begin to soften. This takes about 5-7 minutes. Be sure to stir frequently so your garlic doesn’t burn.
After the 5 minutes, add in the can of diced tomatoes with juice and the can of drained and rinsed beans. Pour the broth and two cups of water right on top; throw in the bouillon cube and bay leaf. It’s going to look like a lot of liquid but it will cook down and the pasta is going to absorb a good amount of it. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium low, cover and cook on a slow boil for 30 minutes. Stir once or twice. During this time, taste your soup and adjust the seasoning to your liking.
Optional step: after about 25 minutes I removed 1 cup of the soup contents, blended them and added it back into the soup. I like a thicker soup so this helps.
Now it’s time to add in the pasta. At this point keep an eye on it and stir frequently to prevent the contents from sticking to the bottom. Cook for 15 more minutes or until the pasta is tender.
Time to eat! I topped my soup with freshly grated Parmesan. I would pair this with a good crusty French bread and a good glass of red wine.