My new favorite thing? Extra large batches of soup. There's nothing better than getting home from work and having a delicious dinner already prepared, that's healthy, and not take out. Sometimes I feel like I'm getting sucked into the New York takeout vortex, because when work days are so busy and long the last thing I feel like doing is coming home to another project - dinner.
Last Sunday I spent the day prepping a bunch of things to get us through the week: peeling grapefruits, boiling eggs, veggie egg cups, along with two batches of soup.
I'll start by sharing Louis's favorite of the two, Minestrone topped with fresh pesto.
Servings: 6-8 (We had ours with a salads for three nights.)
This recipe is adapted from my new favorite cookbook that was a gift from my Sister. If you have a chance to pick it up, I highly recommend it!
Here's what you need:
1 onion, sliced
2 tomatoes, peeled and sliced
2 cartons of chicken broth (about 64 ounces, can use vegetable broth if preferred)
2 leeks finely sliced
3 carrots peeled and chopped
1 zucchini, diced
1/2 bag frozen green beans
1 can white navy beans
2 handfuls spinach
5 cloves garlic, minced
optional: fresh parmesan for topping
2 cups basil leaves
5 cloves garlic
2 tbsp pine nuts
Approximate 1.5 cups of extra virgin olive oil - depending on how much you need during blending process
Here's what you do:
In a large soup pot, turn heat to high and add a few glugs of olive oil (or oil of your choice)
Sautee garlic and onion until soft
Add tomatoes for 5 minutes
Add chicken broth and bring to boil
Add leeks, carrots, white beans, simmer for 45 minutes
Add zucchini, green beans and spinach and simmer for an additional 15 minutes
Season with a little salt and pepper
While the soup is cooking, throw everything into a blender but start with about a 1/4 cup of the oil
Blend and add oil as needed
Ladle the soup into bowls and top with a generous dollop of pesto and a sprinkle of parmesan if desired.
We served ours with a side salad each night and were more than satisfied. We are trying to limit carbs, but if you're not, I suggest serving with some kind of delicious french or sour dough bread. It's delicious and full of flavor, plus super healthy and easy to make. If you're thinking of leaving out the pesto, don't! It really adds a lot of delicious flavor and changes it up a bit from your regular ole Minestrone.