Thursday, March 7, 2013

If it's March this must be minestrone

It's amazing what a little bit of this can do.  I decided to make a minestrone; can of white beans, check - broth, leeks, carrots, celery, check - green stuff from the winter garden, check - small tubetti or other small pasta, check.  Then… Lazy Cook took the pot that moments ago warmed up leftover bowtie pasta with squash, spinach and a creamy 2 cheese drizzle, did not wash the pot, and sweated the tomato paste to begin the new brew. Dirty Minestrone. Horrifying? Yes. Also delicious.

So, for the soffritto, any or all of the following: leek, onion, carrot, fennel, celery, parsnip… in your choice of fat and then don't forget the tomato paste, 3 or 4 tablespoons.

For the broth, vegetable or chicken, topped up with water to yield about 2 and a half litres of finished soup.

For toothiness, diced potato and/or rutabaga, tubetti or any small pasta shape you like the looks of
Tofu or seitan would probably work, too.

For the greens, I went with chard and beet greens. Spinach, rapini, collards, or kale would also be fab.

Seasoning, lots and lots of fresh-grind black pepper, oregano, parsley, a bit of crushed fennel seed, dried savoury and a fistful of parsley. Fancy sea salt is nice but taste first, it depends on how salty a broth you used.

For the finish, diced roasted red pepper if you have it, a splash of pinot gris, and top it with a parmesan toast. (or two, or three, as the case may be. Ahem)

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