Now that fall is here (and I say it is, despite the 89 degree days we are having). Speaking of which, does anyone else find it challenging to dress for fall?! Last week I had bus duty, outside in the morning. It was in the lower 40’s! But then when I left for work, it was in the upper 80’s! How does one dress to accommodate a 40 degree change?!
Even with all the crazy temperatures, there is one thing I don’t have to think about and that is soup. It is time for soup. I am ready for soup. I am embracing my soup loving soul.
I began with Minestrone from Not Your Mother's Slow Cooker Cookbook by Beth Hensperger and Julie Kaufmann. Minestrone is a classic and like all classics, with good reason. It’s good. It’s so good, I didn’t even miss the meat, and as a confirmed meat lover, that is saying something. Made pretty much as written, except that I added a Parmesan cheese rind, because I always do.
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
- 2 small carrots, diced
- 2 ribs celery, chopped
- 2 small zucchini, trimmed and cubed
- One 15-ounce can kidney beans, rinsed and drained, with 1/2 the beans mashed (I used my freezer stash)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 bay leaf
- Freshly ground black pepper to taste
- 1/4 cup packed fresh parsley leave, chopped
- One 28-ounce can whole tomatoes, mashed, with their juice
- One 10-ounce package frozen baby lima beans
- 2 1/2 cups chicken broth
- 5 leaves Swiss chard, chopped or 1/2 small head of Napa cabbage, cored and chopped
- 1/2 cup dry red wine
- 1/3 cup elbow macaroni or little shells
- Freshly grated Parmesan cheese for serving
In a skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onions, carrots, celery and zucchini and cook until just softened, about 5 minutes. Transfer to the slow cooker and add everything except the Swiss chard, wine, and pasta. Cover and cook on low for 5 hours.
Add the chard and wine and continue to cook on low for another 2 to 3 hours. Remove the bay leaf.
Stir in the pasta and cook on high until the pasta is tender – about 30 minutes. Serve with Parmesan cheese.
This will be my entry for Souper Sundays (Soup, Salad, or Sammie) hosted by Deb at Kahakai Kitchen.