Ahhhhhh, fall—the season of cozy sweaters, vibrant foliage, and, most importantly, comfort food.
But before we dive into this delicious one pot hearty minestrone soup, and how to make it, let’s take a moment to appreciate the magic of fall. It’s a season of change, when the world transforms into a canvas of rich, warm colors, and we embrace the joy of bundling up in blankets while sipping on hot beverages. In the spirit of autumn, we’re about to embark on a culinary adventure that captures all the essence of this wonderful time of year.
There’s just something about the crisp air and the rustling leaves that makes us crave a warm, hearty bowl of soup. At least that is how I feel over here in Ontario where the weather has been cooling down my kitchen finally wants to be heating up again.
Fresh Produce is Plentiful in the Fall
If you’re like me and you have a garden full of tomatoes, this classic Italian dish is a fall go to meal. In the past when I haven’t had much harvest in my garden, a can of Italian tomatoes will also substitute beautifully and will be the heart of this recipe. This recipe has been adjusted and changed overtime and I finally created the perfect dish and soup that can not only satisfy your taste buds, it can also fill your home with the irresistible aroma of simmering autumn goodness.
Now, let’s talk about the star players in our minestrone soup. Imagine the vibrant colors of fall’s harvest, and you’ll get a sense of the colorful ingredients we will be using.
Fall Inspired Ingredients
1. Fresh Vegetables: Fall is the perfect time to savor the bounty of the season. We’ll be using a delightful combination of carrots, celery and bell peppers. These veggies not only provide essential nutrients but also bring a burst of color to your soup pot.
2. Savory Herbs: Nothing says fall like the earthy aroma of fresh herbs. We’ll be adding a fragrant bouquet garni of rosemary, thyme and bay leaves to infuse our minestrone with that unmistakable autumn flavor.
3. Beans, Beans, Beans: To give our minestrone some heartiness, we’ll be tossing in a mix of cannellini and kidney beans. These legumes provide a satisfying texture and a good dose of protein.
4. Pasta Perfection: It wouldn’t be minestrone without some pasta! We’re using small pasta like elbow macaroni to soak up all the delicious flavours
5. Tomato Tango: A rich, tomato-based broth will be the foundation of our soup. Fresh tomatoes or canned diced tomatoes and tomato paste will bring the bold, tangy taste that minestrone is known for.
6. A Grating of Parmesan: And of course, what would minestrone be without a generous sprinkle of Parmesan cheese? This salty, nutty cheese adds a delightful finishing touch to our soup.
The best part about making minestrone is that it’s as much fun to prepare as it is to eat. So, roll up your sleeves, put on your favorite fall playlist and create a masterpiece in your kitchen.
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 onion, chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 carrots, diced
- 2 celery stalks, diced
- 1 red bell pepper, diced
- 1 can (14 oz) diced tomatoes (Or equivalent with fresh tomatoes)
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 6 cups vegetable broth (or 6 cups of water with Vegetta seasoning to taste)
- 1 teaspoon of rosemary
- 1 teaspoon of thyme
- 3 bay leaves
- 1 cup small pasta (ditalini or elbow macaroni)
- 1 can (14 oz) cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 can (14 oz) kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Grated Parmesan cheese, for serving
How to Make:
- In a large soup pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the chopped onion and garlic and sauté until fragrant and translucent.
- Add the diced carrots, celery, zucchini, and red bell pepper. Sauté for about 5 minutes, until the vegetables start to soften.
- Stir in the diced tomatoes and tomato paste. Cook for another 2 minutes to combine the flavors.
- Pour in the vegetable broth and add the bouquet garni. Bring the soup to a boil, then reduce the heat to low and let it simmer for 15 minutes.
- Add the small pasta and cook according to package instructions until al dente.
- Stir in the cannellini and kidney beans, and simmer for an additional 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Remove the bouquet garni and discard it.
- Serve your minestrone hot, garnished with a generous grating of Parmesan cheese.
There you have it, a playful take on a classic minestrone soup recipe that’s perfect for celebrating the flavors of fall.
Whether you’re making it for a cozy night in or inviting friends and family to join you at the dinner table, this hearty minestrone is sure to warm your souls and fill your autumn with delicious memories.
So, grab your apron, embrace the season and let’s get cooking!
Have you made any soups yet this season? What have you been mixing up in your kitchen?