Monday, May 21, 2012

The best Minestrone....EVER!!!

Minestrone with Spring Vegetables

Contributing chef PAM ANDERSON fuels up after runs with a quick-to-prepare, seasonal, and meatless soup. By Pam Anderson Image by Andrew Purcell From the May 2012 issue of Runner's World

Minestrone with Spring Vegetables
Minestrone with Spring Vegetables

Leafy escarole is rich in vitamin K and folate, while beans are an excellent source of fiber. Use whatever bite-size pasta you have on hand, says Anderson.

2 quarts good-quality vegetable broth (I use organic low sodium)
1 14.5-ounce can petite-diced tomatoes
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, cut into small dice
1 celery stalk, cut into small dice
1 peeled carrot, cut into small dice
2 teaspoons Italian seasonings
1/4 teaspoon hot red pepper flakes, or to taste (We like spice so I doubled this)
2 cans (15 to 16 ounces each) small white beans, not drained
8 ounces frozen green peas
8 ounces coarsely chopped escarole (For those of you who don't's a lettuce)
1 cup ditalini (or any bite-size pasta) (could only find this pasta at this pasta)
Sprinkle of salt and ground black pepper

Microwave broth and tomatoes together on high until steaming (5 minutes).

Heat oil over medium-high heat in a large pot. Add onions, celery, and carrots; saute till tender (5 minutes). Add Italian seasonings and red pepper; saute until fragrant (one minute).

Add broth mixture and remaining ingredients; cover and bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to medium-low; continue to simmer, partially covered and stirring occasionally, until vegetables are soft and pasta is tender (15 minutes). Serves eight.

**This was the most delicious soup I have ever made!!  I didn't miss the meat at all!  If you eat meat, you can add it in to this soup, but honestly it is good on it's own.  My daughter's loved it as well!  I will make this again!  Don't leave out the makes it delicious.  I could only find it at Fry's in the lettuce section.  Also, the ditalini pasta is great.  This was a hard pasta to find as well but Fry's had it. 

FAT: 4 G

Ten-time marathoner PAM ANDERSON was inspired to write her latest title, Cook Without a Book: Meatless Meals, after deciding in 2009 to eat less meat. "I didn't want to support factory farming," says Anderson, who ran the Seaside School Half-Marathon in Santa Rosa, Florida, in March. "Now that I know how to make great vegetarian meals, I cook this way even more frequently." For more, see

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