Minestrone loosely based on Recipes from an Italian Summer which is served warm…tonight it will be hot minestrone.
I made the soup in the Crockpot adding the squash, macaroni, and cannellini beans during the last 2 hour period of cooking time, adding more broth from time to time as needed. 6-8 hours total depending on the accuracy of your slow cooker.
1-1/2 ounce thick slice of bacon 1/2 clove garlic (2 finely diced) 1/2 onion (1 whole small) 1 sprig fresh flat-leaf parsley (use a couple more, c’mon) 1rib of celery 3 tomatoes, peeled, de-seeded and diced (1 can diced tomatoes/large or small can-more is better) 2 carrots, small dice 4 oven roasted plum tomatoes rough chopped 3 potatoes, chopped (1-1-1/2 cups dried tubetti macaroni) 1 zucchini and 1 yellow squash, quartered and sliced 2 tablespoons olive oil 8 oz (1 ¾ cups) shelled peas (I used frozen) 1/2 Savoy cabbage, shredded 1 can cannellini beans drained or fresh shelled borlotti beans 4 fresh sage leaves, chopped 6 fresh basil leaves, chopped 3-1/2-5 cups vegetable broth (can use ½ chicken and ½ vegetable 1 sprig fresh oregano, chopped Salt Parmesan cheese, freshly grated, to serve
Finely chop the lardons with the garlic and onion. When the mixture is quite fine, add the parsley and celery and chop. Put the mixture into a saucepan, add the tomatoes, carrots, potatoes, courgettes and oil and pour in 3 ½ pints water. Season with salt and bring to the boil over a high heat. Reduce the heat and cook for at least 2 hours. Add the peas, beans and cabbage, simmer for 15 minutes, then add the rice and simmer, stirring occasionally, for a further 18 minutes until it is tender. Stir in the herbs, ladle into a soup tureen and serve with plenty of Parmesan. This minestrone should be fairly thick. It is excellent hot, but it is also good served warm or cold in the summer.