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Minestrone Soup

No recipe image available.A hearty Italian soup with beans, vegetables, bacon and pasta.

Recipe Ingredients:

2 (15-ounce) cans pinto beans, drained and rinsed
4 cups water
2 carrots, peeled and sliced
6 strips of bacon
1 onion, diced
3/4 cup chopped celery
5 garlic cloves, crushed
1 (28-ounce) can whole tomatoes, with juice
2 cups chopped, cored cabbage
1 zucchini, sliced
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons dried basil
1/2 teaspoon sage
1 cup uncooked small pasta
Freshly grated Parmesan cheese for accompaniment

Cooking Directions:

  1. In a large stockpot combine pinto beans and water. Bring to a boil and simmer for 2 minutes. Drain, add 4 fresh cups water and bring to a boil. Turn off heat, let stand for 30 minutes. Add sliced carrots, cover, and simmer for 30 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, cook strips of bacon until crisp; drain, crumble and set aside. Reserve 2 tablespoons of the drippings.*
  3. In the reserved bacon drippings, cook the diced onion, chopped celery, and crushed garlic cloves until almost tender; drain on a paper towel and add to the beans.
  4. Add tomatoes, chopped cabbage, sliced zucchini, salt, basil, and sage to the simmering beans. Stir in noodles and simmer for 10 minutes or until pasta is al dente.
  5. Sprinkle with the crumbled bacon and grated Parmesan cheese just before serving.

Makes 8 servings.

*To reduce cholesterol and low-density lippo-proteins substitute 2 tablespoons canola oil for the 2 tablespoons bacon fat.