The weather in San Francisco has been abnormally cold this week and all I can think about is a piping hot bowl of comforting soup. There's no better way to start the weekend — or warm the soul — than with a familiar soup chock-full of vegetables and pasta.

This minestrone recipe combines broccoli rabe with green beans, cannellini beans, and zucchini. It's a really versatile technique, however, and any vegetables you have on hand will do. To make it vegetarian-friendly, simply use vegetable broth instead of chicken broth.

Interested in the recipe? Read more.

Meal-in-a-Bowl Minestrone

Meal-in-a-Bowl Minestrone

Ingredients

  1. 2 Tbsp olive oil, preferably extra-virgin
  2. 1 1⁄2 cups chopped onion
  3. 1 Tbsp minced garlic
  4. 4 cups plus 1⁄4 cup water
  5. 1 can (14 1⁄2 oz) reduced-sodium fat-free chicken broth (13⁄4 cups)
  6. 1 cup small whole-wheat pasta (such as elbow macaroni)
  7. 1 medium carrot, cut in 4 pieces lengthwise, then in 1⁄4-in.-thick slices
  8. 1 can (15 oz) no-salt-added cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  9. 8 oz broccoli rabe, cut bite-size, or 4 cups broccoli florets
  10. 1 medium zucchini, cut in half lengthwise, then in 1⁄2-in.-thick slices
  11. 4 oz green beans, cut in 1-in. pieces (1 cup)
  12. 1 cup packed parsley leaves
  13. 2 Tbsp grated Parmesan
  14. 1 lb plum ( Roma) tomatoes, chopped in 1⁄2-in. pieces (2 1⁄2 cups)

Directions

  1. Heat 1 tsp oil in a heavy 5- to 6-qt pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Stir in onion; cover and cook 5 minutes or until golden, stirring occasionally. Add 2 tsp garlic; cook 30 seconds until fragrant.
  2. Add 4 cups water and the broth; bring to a boil. Add pasta and carrot; boil 5 minutes. Reserve 3⁄4 cup of the cannellini beans.
  3. Stir rest into pot along with broccoli rabe, zucchini and green beans. Return to a boil and boil 5 minutes or until pasta and vegetables are tender.
  4. Meanwhile purée remaining beans, 5 tsp oil, 1 tsp garlic, 1⁄4 cup water, the parsley and cheese in a food processor or blender.
  5. Remove from heat; stir tomatoes into soup. Stir in the parsley mixture or serve it alongside.

Serves 4.

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