February 21, 2010

Team USA > Canada Minestrone Soup

Absolutely AMAZING Hockey Game!

I am deep in the Olympic spirit this week. But I'm still managing to cook a little in between events or when Team USA is not playing in any non-ice dancing events. I know vegetable soups are super easy to make, but I always seem to forget this; so I decided to take a stab at it during my lazy Olympics Sunday afternoon. Also, of some inspiration, one of our moms left 2 bagged Manischewitz Minestrone soup mixes, a super-jewy product, when we moved in. My childhood memories are filled of my mom's awesome Split Pea Soup, which I'm pretty sure was made from (or at least with the help of) one of these mixes, as well as the nasty, watery failures resulting from attempts to use the other flavored soup mixes. I knew I would have to improve upon the instructions, and luckily I had the supplies I needed to add actual taste to the water. I've always liked tomato based Minestrones and Vegetable Soups; I may or may not have frequently added ketchup to my canned vegetable soups in the past. I even think that the addition of a few more spices and a higher broth:water ratio would have eliminated the need for the soup mix altogether. But now I only have one tube o' "soup" hiding in the back of my pantry. And if I do say so myself this soup is hearty and pastalicious enough for Team USA Hockey, I'll cook for you boys any day.

1 small onion, chopped
2 carrots, chopped
2-3 ribs celery, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
olive oil
2 cups broth
5-6 cups water
1 Tube Minestrone Soup mix
3/4-1 jar marinara sauce
1-1 1/2 cups (dry) small shells pasta
Parmesan cheese

Saute carrots in oil for 2 minutes, then add celery, saute for 1 minute, add onion and garlic and continue to cook for 3 minutes until vegetables start to brown and onions are at least translucent. Add broth and water and bring to a boil. Add soup mix to boiling mixture (it's what the soup mix packet said to do). Lower the heat and cover the pot and let the soup simmer for about 25 minutes. Add the sauce, and return to a simmer for another 20-25 minutes. Puree about half of the soup; I just took an immersion blender to it and didn't puree the whole thing. Add the pasta and continue to simmer/low boil until the pasta is al dente, maybe even a bit firmer. Remove from heat and cool so you don't burn your tongue like I did. Top each serving with Parmesan cheese. It's a pretty thick soup, so you may need to add a little water when reheating leftovers. I also tried my hand at Hasselback potatoes with garlic and smoked paprika; they didn't taste particularly special, but they looked cool.

No comments:

Post a Comment