- cold weather equals soup season in our household, and since my 4 year old will eat a pizza/pasta only diet if given the choice, i rely on soups to give him the most veggies and protein possible. i ate a ton of different soups while growing up, and have a lot of favorites but minestrone has always been in the top 5. when perusing the Food Network app one day looking for inspiration on a new soup recipe i stumbled onto Mario Batali’s Minestrone Siciliano.
- from the get go i adapted this recipe for my tastes and our family and it has been one i make at least once a month during the Fall/Winter seasons. packs a ton of veggies into one serving with the added saltiness of prosciutto, take a look at the recipe below and make sure to make a big batch, this stuff goes FAST!
Tarah’s Minestrone Soup
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil ( we love Olio Carli, available at Whole Foods or Gourmet Warehouse)
1 large onion, small dice
1 celery stalk, small dice
1 carrot, peeled, and diced small
1 clove garlic, minced
1/3 cup diced prosciutto end ( i pick mine up at Cioffi’s Deli)
4 medium fresh tomatoes or 1 large can of diced tomatoes
1 tbsp fresh chopped parsley
6 cups chicken stock ( or vegetable if you want to make this vegetarian)
salt and fresh ground pepper
3/4 small pasta, like orzo ( or arborio rice if you want to make this gluten free)
2 yellow/red/orange peppers, i usually do 1 red and 1 yellow, cut into small dice
1 Parmesan rind and more for topping
6 fresh chopped basil leaves
- in a large soup pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat until hot but not smoking. add the prosciutto pieces and let them color slightly but not brown, remove onto paper towel. add another tablespoon of oil and onion and cook, stirring for 1 minute. Lower the heat slightly and add the celery, garlic and carrots. allow them to simmer over low heat until the veggies have softened, about 10 minutes. add the ham pieces back with the chopped tomatoes, parsley and the Parmesan rind, cook for 5 more minutes to allow the flavors to meld.
- add the stock and season with salt and pepper, cover and let the mixture come to a boil. Add the pasta/rice and allow to simmer until the pasta is al dente ( or the rice is cooked, about 40 mins for the rice). stir occasionally.
- when the pasta/rice is cooked, add the peppers and remove the soup from the heat, stir in the grated Parmesan and chopped basil leaves. serve with crusty bread and butter!