I was a little apprehensive about serving soup for dinner but it was a big hit, especially with my husband. I served it with bread topped with mozzarella cheese. While the kids ate mostly bread, they did try the soup. Little D is still in the love-to-eat-with-the-spoon stage so he ate more than Big A.
For those of you with beginner eaters, soups make great finger foods. Just take out the soft pieces like the beans, pasta and veggies (cook to be soft enough) and cut in half if needed. Little D used to eat soup/stew this way but now he’s a spoon boy.
This is really quick to make — and so tasty topped with parmesan cheese. To save time, cut the veggies the night before or earlier in the day. You can whip it up in about 30 minutes.
Any minestrone soup lovers out there?
-2 TBS extra virgin olive oil
-2 medium zucchini (about 9 ounces each), unpeeled and cut into 1/2-inch dice
-1 large carrot, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch dice (1 cup)
-1/2 small onion, cut into 1/4-inch dice (1/2 cup)
-2 cloves garlic, minced
-1 tsp dried Italian seasoning
-32 ounce carton all-natural chicken broth
-15 ounce can tomato sauce
-15 ounce can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
-1/2 cup dried whole wheat blend elbow pasta
-3 fresh thyme sprigs (I didn’t have these and it still turned out wonderful!)
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
-1/3 cup grated Paremesan cheese (optional)
1. Heat the oil in a large Dutch oven or saucepan over medium heat. Add the zucchini, carrot, onion, garlic, and Italian seasoning and cook, stirring frequently, until the vegetables soften, about 12 minutes. Reduce the heat if the vegetables brown too quickly.
2. Stir in the broth and tomato sauce. Cover and raise the heat, and bring to a boil. Add the beans, pasta, and thyme, reduce the heat and cook at a low boil, uncovered, until the pasta is tender, about 10 minutes.
3. Remove the thyme sprigs, and season with salt and pepper to taste. Top each serving with the Parmesan cheese if desired.
Nutrition: (1 cup): 160 calories, 6g fat (.5 saturated), 7g fiber, 60% vitamin A, 50% vitamin C, 10% iron