Although I live in Florida and our fall season feels more like a hot summer’s day in Maine, I couldn’t wait for the weather to cool down to make my famous minestrone soup. I simply had to have some! This soup is brimming with thick, hearty veggies, fresh herbs and tons of flavor. After devouring my first bowl, I had to remember why I only make this soup a few times a year. It’s so delicious, it can be enjoyed all year long.
As you can see from the ingredient list, there is a lot going on here. I use kidney, garbanzo and cannellini beans for added protein, variety and flavor. If you’re thinking of only using 1 or 2 of the beans or substituting with another bean, I’d reconsider. The recipe isn’t the same unless all 3 beans are included. While you may end up with a soup that is tasty, you will totally miss out on this experience. I don’t want that to happen, so make sure you have the beans on hand. If you have to make a special trip to the store, it’s going to be worth it.
Another key component to this recipe is FRESH. Fresh green beans, savoy cabbage, carrots, celery, onion, basil and parsley. I used all organic which makes a huge difference for me. If you cannot buy all organic, at least purchase organic russet potatoes. And for the tomatoes, try to resist the urge to use canned. Without going through a lengthy explanation here, I recommend you read 7 Foods Experts Won’t Eat. Hopefully, after reading this you’ll never use conventional potatoes and canned tomatoes ever again.
As you can see from the picture below (my mouth waters just looking at it), this recipe makes a pretty large batch. Whatever you have leftover, I recommend you freeze it. There’s nothing better than being able to whip up a bowl of comfort any time you like.
- All organic if possible:
- 32 oz. organic low sodium vegetable broth
- 3 tbsp. EVOO
- 3-4 tbsp. Amul Ghee (omit for vegans, and use more EVOO)
- 1 Bay Leaf
- 1 tbsp. freshly chopped parsley
- 1 tbsp. freshly chopped basil
- 4 carrots, peeled and cut in ½” pieces
- 4 celery stalks, cut in ½” pieces
- 1 zucchini, sliced in to ½” pieces
- 3 large tomatoes, peeled and chopped
- 4 large russet potatoes (peeled and cut into ¾” cubes)
- 1 onion, diced
- 6 garlic cloves, diced
- 2 cups fresh green beans, cut into bite-size pieces
- ½ head of savoy cabbage, or any other type of green cabbage, chopped into large pieces
- 1 can Eden Organic Kidney Beans (BPA-Free)
- 1 can Eden Organic Garbanzo Beans (BPA-Free)
- 1 can Eden Organic Cannellini Beans (BPA-Free)
- or ½ cup of each dry bean *see below for soaking instructions
- ½ cup Nutritional Yeast, optional (recommended for those opting out of using Ghee, the nutritional yeast will substitute for the savory flavor that Ghee provides)
- Add 2 tbsp. Ghee and 2 tbsp. EVOO to a large skillet and sauté garlic, celery, onion, carrots, and green beans on low for 15 minutes. Vegans double EVOO.
- Add, zucchini and sauté for an additional 5 minutes or until veggies are slightly tender, not too soft. You also may need to add more Ghee or EVOO.
- Add the vegetable broth, sautéed veggies, cabbage, parsley, basil, bay leaf, tomatoes and potatoes to a large soup pot.
- Bring to a boil and immediately reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes.
- Next, drain and rinse the canned beans, and add to the pot and simmer for 10 minutes or until potatoes can be easily pierced with a fork. At this point, I like to add an additional heaping spoonful of Ghee for more flavor.
- Take off heat and add Nutritional Yeast and Pink Salt to taste.
If using dry beans:
- The day before, soak ½ cup of each bean for 24 hours. Initially use hot water to start the soak process, and change soak water in between.
- Add ½ tsp. baking soda to Garbanzo and Kidney Beans for the first half of the soaking process (this reduces cooking time by half).
- Thoroughly rinse beans before cooking.
- Beans should cook within 30-45 minutes. Check Garbanzo and Kidney beans within the first 30 minutes, they can easily overcook when soaked in baking soda.
- Rinse and set aside until ready to add to the soup.
Delectable, delightful, scrumptious and yumptious with each spoonful. I can’t get enough, and neither will you. I’d love to hear what these pictures conjure up for you. Please leave a comment below and spread the word on FB and Twitter. Your friends and family will thank you!