Last week I had a chill I just couldn't quite shake. I'm glad this week has 'warmed up' to the 30s, but I have another way to help combat the cold as well. Soup. Minestrone soup to be exact.
Minestrone is a hearty Italian soup that usually has lots of vegetables. I like to make it with spicy Italian Sausage to add a little kick to it. It's also really easy to put together and can be done as a one pot dish. Served with some crusty bread, it is perfect for a chilly evening.
1 lb spicy Italian Sausage
3–4 cloves garlic, pressed
1/2 of a yellow onion, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
Handful of baby carrots, diced
1 package frozen spinach
1 zucchini, chopped
1 red pepper, chopped
2 tablespoons oregano
1 teaspoon basil
1 teaspoon thyme
4 cups vegetable broth
Small can tomato paste
2 cups water
1 package cheese tortellini
Grated parmesan cheese for serving
In a large pot, cook Italian Sausage over medium heat until it is almost fully done.
Add in the frozen spinach and cook until the spinach has defrosted and broken apart.
Add the garlic, diced onions, carrots, and celery, and cook for 5 or so minutes until the veggies have softened a bit.
Add oregano, basil, and thyme. Pour in the vegetable broth, tomato paste, and water. Stir until well combined. Toss in the zucchini and red pepper.
Bring the soup to a boil. Let boil for 10–15 minutes.
Toss in tortellini and cook according to package directions.
Serve immediately with parmesan cheese and crusty bread.
A couple of notes—
- I don't drain the fat from the Italian Sausage typically. It doesn't have a lot of excess fat usually, and I don't mind the little bit in there being combined with my soup. If yours is particularly fatty, cook the Italian Sausage all the way through, drain it with a paper towel on a plate, cook the spinach in the pot to defrost, add the Italian Sausage back in and go from there.
- You may want to add more water if your soup seems too thick.
- Feel free to substitute veggies that you have on hand. That’s the beauty of Minestrone. It can accomodate just about anything.
- You could also substitute a different pasta. I like to use tortellini because it holds up well in any leftover soup you might have, and it adds a nice texture.
- Mine doesn't have as much broth in these photos because it is actually from the next day. The light was bad when we had it for dinner, so these are from leftovers the next day at lunch.