Minestrone with Orecchiette and Borlotti Beans
This is a quick and easy Minestrone, particularly appropriate for winter. The ‘cheating’ element come from having most of the vegetables ready prepared and the beans ready cooked. The result, I promise you, is one the very nicest minestrones I’ve ever tasted.
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This recipe is taken from Delia's How to Cheat at Cooking
First heat the oil in a large cooking pot, then chop the pancetta quite small with a knife and add it to the hot oil. Next put the swede and carrot, celery and onion into a food processor and pulse till chopped just a little more finely.
Now add the garlic to the pancetta and stir it around briefly, then tip the swede,carrot, celery and onion in and, keeping the heat high, turn them around and cook for about five minutes.
After that add the tomatoes and stock, and when it begins to simmer add some seasoning, cover with a lid and cook gently for 20 minutes.
Then the lid comes off and the pasta, borlotti beans and cabbage are stirred in and then back to simmering point and let it continue to cook gently (without a lid) for a further 10 – 15 minutes.
Serve in heated bowls with chopped basil, and lots of parmesan.
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Plenty of vegetables and the addition of pasta make this an immensely satisfying and filling soup that costs very little but is definitely in the luxury class! Enjoy it with crusty bread.
This is a big, hefty soup, perfect for the winter months with a light main course to follow. Alternatively, it is a complete lunch, with just some cheese and a salad after it.
We all know that pulses are a brilliant source of fibre and protein, so if you want to up your intake, this soup is just one way of doing so. The cannellini beans give the soup a creamy texture and the flavour is out of this world!
Pumpkin and other squashes make excellent soup in the autumn...you could even try serving this in the hollowed-out pumpkin shell for visual appeal, perfect for Halloween!
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