Quick Minestrone Soup

My mother-in-law was a caterer and worked for many of the high society ladies in NYC, Long Island and Westchester in her day. She cooked everything perfectly, not like me. But I did learn to cook quite a few of her recipes. This minestrone is to die for, lots of flavor. You really don’t need the meat at all, the kale and herbs gives the soup all the flavor. Enjoy!



1/4 cup olive oil
1 small onion, coarsely chopped
4 garlic cloves, crushed in a garlic press
4 pound prewashed and cut kale (6 cups)
3 carrots diced
4 potatoes diced
2 zucchini diced
1 (14 1/2-oz) can “petite” diced tomatoes in juice
1 cup ditalini pasta
5 1/4 cups chicken broth (42 fl oz)
2 cups water
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 (19-oz) can kidney beans, rinsed and drained
2 tablespoons each basil, thyme, oregano
Sausage or Bacon (optional)

Accompaniment: grated parmesan.



Heat oil in a 5- to 6-quart heavy pot over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking, then cook onion and garlic, stirring occasionally, until golden, about 3 minutes. Add kale and sauté, stirring, 1 minute. Add vegetables, kidney beans, tomatoes with juice, pasta, broth, water, salt, and pepper and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are tender and pasta is al dente, about 10 minutes.

Simmer, stirring occasionally, until soup is slightly thickened, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

Makes 6-8 servings.
Prep time 20 mins
Approx cost $7

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