Chock-full of veggies, this chunky soup is nearly a meal in itself, says Regina Cook of Crowley, Texas. “I got the recipe from my parents, who made it for years. Now my friends ask to come over whenever I make it,” she adds.
- 1 bacon strip, diced
- 2/3 cup smoked kielbasa or Polish sausage, quartered
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1/4 cup chopped carrot
- 2 tablespoons chopped celery
- 1 cup chicken broth
- 1 cup canned diced tomatoes, undrained
- 1 can (5-1/2 ounces) tomato juice
- 1/4 cup chopped zucchini
- 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
- 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/4 teaspoon salt, optional
- 1/8 teaspoon pepper
- 1/3 cup canned pinto beans, rinsed and drained
- 1/4 cup cooked elbow macaroni
- 1 tablespoon grated Parmesan cheese
- In a large saucepan, cook bacon over medium heat until crisp. Using a slotted spoon, remove to paper towel. In the drippings, saute sausage, onion and garlic for 3 minutes. Stir in the carrot and celery. Cook and stir 2 minutes longer or until sausage is lightly browned; drain.
- Stir in the broth, tomatoes, tomato juice, zucchini and seasonings. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 10 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Stir in the beans and macaroni; heat through. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and bacon. Yield: 2 servings.
Originally published as Simple Minestrone in Cooking for 2 Winter 2006, p12
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