Minestrone Soup

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Celebrate the harvest in a bowl! This very hearty soup can be enjoyed as a main course or as the perfect starter for your next Italian feast. This recipe is also great for canning because it can easily be doubled, tripled and quadrupled, it all depends on the size of your harvest. We garnish steaming bowls with pistou and a sprinkling of nutritional yeast or you can use your favorite vegan parmesan.

3 to 5 carrots (about 2 cups chopped)
3 to 5 stalks of celery (about 2 cups chopped)
1 large onion
3 cloves of garlic
1 Tablespoon Tuscan Herb mix
pinch of salt and pepper
1 cup red wine (for sautéing)
2 quarts vegetable stock
1 small head of cauliflower (cut into small florets)
1 small head of cabbage (chopped to about 1” pieces)
1 large turnip (cut into bite sized pieces)
2 cups cooked white beans (cannellini, navy, etc.)
1 cup of string beans (cut into 1” pieces)
2 12 oz cans whole tomatoes
1 can of tomato paste
½ pound shell or elbow-shaped pasta (optional)

Wash, scrub vegetables. Peel the turnips. Peel the carrots as well if they aren’t organic. Chop the carrots and celery into bite-sized pieces. Peel and chop the onion. Peel and mince the garlic cloves. Cut cauliflower into small florets. Chop cabbage into 1 inch pieces. Chop the turnip into bite-sized pieces. Cut the string beans into 1 inch pieces.

In a large soup pot (at least 5 quarts) sauté the carrots, celery and onion and herbs in the red wine for about 10 minutes. Then add the vegetable stock, cauliflower, cabbage, turnip, white beans, string beans, tomatoes and tomato paste.

Bring to a boil, cover and simmer for 35 to 40 minutes or until the vegetables are tender and the cabbage is thoroughly cooked.

In a separate large pot filled with rapidly boiling water, cook half a pound of your favorite shell or elbow-shaped pasta per package directions for “al dente”.

Meanwhile, bring soup back to a low rolling boil. Once the pasta is done cooking drain, rinse off the starch and add to the boiling soup. Let it cook for an additional three minutes.

Serve with a dollop of basil-garlic pistou and a sprinkling of nutritional yeast.

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