Butternut squash, a leek and fresh kale make my minestrone different from most others. Not only do ingredients like this help keep the fat grams down, but they create a lovely blend of flavors.—Tiffany Anderson-Taylor, Gulfport, Florida
- 1 medium leek (white portion only), thinly sliced
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 3 slices deli ham, chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 quarts water
- 1 can (28 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained
- 1 medium butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cubed
- 2 medium carrots, coarsely chopped
- 2 celery ribs, chopped
- 2 cups fresh baby spinach, cut into thin strips
- 1 cup thinly sliced fresh kale
- 1 medium potato, peeled and cubed
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh rosemary
- 1 teaspoon salt
- Pepper to taste
- 1 can (15 ounces) white kidney or cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
- In a small skillet, saute leek and onion in oil for 2 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Add ham and garlic; cook 1 minute longer.
- Transfer ham mixture to a 5-qt. slow cooker. Stir in the water, vegetables, rosemary, salt and pepper. Cover and cook on low for 7-8 hours or until vegetables are tender.
- Stir in beans; cover and cook 30 minutes longer. Yield: 10 servings (3-1/2 quarts).
Originally published as Colorful Minestrone in Taste of Home Everyday Slow Cooker & One Dish Recipes Annual 2008, p14
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