Minestrone soup

A delicious soup for today. Easy to make and full of ingredients: pasta, beans and lots of vegetables. I cannot wait to make it. Let’s cook.

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
½ small squash
1 green onion
½ green pepper
½ carrot
1 clove of garlic
3 cups beef broth or water
½ cup cooked red beans
½ teaspoon oregano
½ teaspoon thyme
½ teaspoon rosemary
½ teaspoon parsley
Salt to taste
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 small tomato
1 oz conch shells pasta

First we will start preparing the vegetables. We will chop them finely. After that, heat some extra virgin olive oil in a pan and when this is hot enough, sauté the pepper and the carrot. Then we will add the other vegetables. We should do this two minutes later. Three minutes later we will cover the vegetables with the broth or the water.
If we want a vegetarian Minestrone, something healthier, we can use water instead of the beef broth. On the contrary, if we want a more authentic Minestrone, though less healthy, we can use the broth and we can sauté some little pieces of bacon along with the vegetables.
Now we will add the cooked beans. Make sure they are well washed if they are from a can. This is the moment of adding the spices and the Worcestershire sauce. A bit later we will add the tomato, previously finely chopped. Then we will add the pasta and we will have our Minestrone Soup when the pasta is ready. We will add some salt and pepper to taste and we will serve.
Enjoy!

Ingredients

* 3 cups reduced-sodium vegetable or chicken broth
* 1 (28-ounce) can diced tomatoes
* 1 (15-ounce) can white (cannellini or navy) beans, drained
* 2 carrots, peeled and chopped
* 1 celery stalk, chopped
* 1 cup onion, chopped
* 1 teaspoon dried thyme
* 1/2 teaspoon dried sage
* 2 bay leaves
* Salt and ground black pepper
* 2 cups cooked ditalini pasta
* 1 medium zucchini, chopped
* 2 cups coarsely chopped fresh or frozen spinach, defrosted
* 4 tablespoons grated Parmesan or Romano cheese
* Basil sprigs, garnish, optional

Directions

In a slow cooker, combine broth, tomatoes, beans, carrots, celery, onion, thyme, sage, bay leaves, and 1/2 teaspoon each salt and black pepper. Cover and cook on LOW for 6 to 8 hours or on HIGH for 3 to 4 hours.

Thirty minutes before the soup is done cooking, add ditalini, zucchini and spinach. Cover and cook 30 more minutes. Remove bay leaves and season, to taste, with salt and black pepper. Ladle soup into bowls and sprinkle parmesan cheese over top. Garnish with basil, if desired.