Sunday, August 17, 2014

Summer Minestrone

I saw this soup in last month's Fine Cooking and it really jumped out to both Tim and me.  The colors in the photo were super vibrant, and it seemed like a great way to enjoy summer vegetables.  This soup was definitely tasty, but it was also a lot of work.  It starts off with making your own vegetable stock, which is lots of chopping and simmering over a hot stove.  The stock was definitely tastier than store-bought by far, but using so many fresh vegetables also made it a lot more expensive.  Then, add more veggies and noodles to make the soup. I did really like the variety of veggies've got small amounts of lots of vegetables, so each bite is a little different.  I would cook all the vegetables except the eggplant and potato for less time, though -- the parsley, zucchini, summer squash, and corn in particular ended up feeling a little overcooked and they lost their vibrant color.  If I made this again, I would add these vegetables later in the cooking.  Still, the soup was very tasty, especially with a sprinkle of Parmesan on top.  Final verdict: very yummy, but probably not worth the effort unless you are a minestrone afficionado.

Summer Minstrone (adapted from Fine Cooking)
Serves 6

Olive oil
3 celery ribs, diced
2 medium carrots, peeled and diced
1 small onion, diced
2 T minced fresh parsley
1 tsp garlic powder
1 small eggplant, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 medium red potato, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 medium yellow squash, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 medium zucchini, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
Salt and pepper
Kernels from one ear of corn
1 batch Roasted Vegetable Broth (or 6-8 cups store-bought broth)
1 cup small pasta 
Parmesan cheese (or another hard, nutty cheese), to serve

1. Add a generous pour of oil to a large soup pot.  Turn the heat to medium-low, and when the oil is warm, add the celergy, carrots, onion, parsley, and garlic powder.  Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is translucent and the vegetables have begun to soften, about 10 minutes.
2. Stir in the eggplant, potato, yellow squash, and zucchini.  Season generously with salt and pepper.  Cook until the vegetables are just tender, stirring often, about 15 minutes.
3. Add the corn and 6 cups of the broth, and bring to a boil.  Simmer for 10 minutes, then return to a boil and add the pasta.  Simmer until the pasta is al dente, and then taste and add more broth if you like.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.
4. Serve with Parmesan sprinkled on top.  If you have leftovers, add a bit more broth before packing away as the soup will thicken as it sits.


  1. This does look good Sara, and I appreciate you pointing out that it was time consuming...sometimes I'm in the mood for a long day in the kitchen, but sometimes not so much~ I bet the broth was worth the effort though!

  2. I love soup all year round, this one looks like a winner to me (although I may cheat and buy veggie stock!). You guys would LOVE the chimichurri sauce! And I loved seeing the pics of your weekend on Instagram

  3. Love your honest take on the recipe. It sounds really good to me; I'm a fan of soup any time of year.

  4. I love this Minestrone look delicious!!!