Summer is wonderful, but there’s something I love about the chillier seasons. Cosy nights in, big furry coats, roaring fires and let’s face it… who doesn’t like Christmas? Autumn and winter have a lot of pros, but that craving for a big warm plate of comfort food? Well, that is one thing my waistline could live without! So whilst nobody fancies a salad on a frosty day, there’s no reason you can’t still be healthy and satisfied. So I wanted to share with you one of my favourite, hearty winter recipes… chunky minestrone soup.
- 1 onion, peeled and finely chopped
- 2 carrots, peeled and finely chopped
- 1 potato, peeled and diced
- 100g green beans, roughly chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
- 2 tins chopped tomatoes
- 2 tins cannellini beans, drained
- 4 tsp pesto
- 1 tsp chilli powder (optional)
- 1l vegetable stock
- 200g pasta (the smaller the better works here)
- Sea salt and ground pepper
- Olive oil
Here’s what to do:
- Add olive oil to a large, deep saucepan on a low heat, and add the onion, carrots and garlic. Shallow fry for 2-3 minutes, or until softened.
- Stir in the potatoes and fry for another few minutes.
- Next add the pesto, chilli powder (if you fancy a bit of a kick) and vegetable stock, bring to the boil and allow to simmer for 45 minutes.
- Add the chopped tomatoes, green beans and cannellini beans, give everything a good stir and allow to simmer for 10 minutes.
- Chuck in your add pasta. Stir and continue to simmer until the pasta is cooked through – the smaller the pasta, the less time you’ll need. I’ve used cavatappi, but spaghetti works perfectly too.
- Lastly, have a taste and season with salt and pepper. Serve drizzled with olive oil and freshly grated Parmesan on top.