Minestrone Soup

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A couple of years ago a friend of mine lost a ton of weight. I asked her what she was doing and she told me about the Abs Diet. That night, I went online and ordered the books. Five days later, I started the diet. One of the meals the Abs Diet suggested was minestrone soup. I never had it before, so I picked up a can of low sodium minestrone at the store the following week.

I ate it a lot while I was on the diet but I always thought it would taste so much better if the beans weren't so hard. I figured it was just because it was canned soup. I finally got around to making it on my own.


Minestrone Soup
Adapted from: The Pioneer Woman 
Servings: 4-6
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Ingredients:
    • 1 zucchini, cubed
    • 1 squash, cubed
    • 8 oz. mushrooms, chopped
    • 2 carrots, peeled and coined
    • 2 stalks celery, chopped
    • 1 onion, diced
    • 1 can corn, drained
    • 6 oz. green beans, cut into 1 inch pieces
    • 1 can canellini beans, rinsed and drained
    • 1 14.5 oz. can diced tomatoes
    • 4 cups chicken broth
    • 1 tbsp. tomato paste
    • 1 cup small pasta shells, uncooked
    • 2 tbsp. olive oil
    • salt and pepper to taste
Directions:
1. In a large pot heat the olive oil over medium heat. Saute the carrots, celery and onion for 5 minutes.
2. Add the chicken broth and bring to a boil. Reduce to low heat and let simmer for 15 minutes.
3. Add the corn, green beans, beans, diced tomatoes and tomato paste. Stir well. Season with salt and pepper. Cook for 10 minutes more.
4. Add the pasta shells and cook for 5 more minutes. Then add the zucchini, squash and mushrooms and cook for 5-10 minutes more or until all of the vegetables are soft and heated through.

I'm really glad I tasted this recipe before putting it into containers and in the fridge. I had to adjust the salt and pepper a bit but the soup had a good flavor. Unfortunately, this was not the soup to make ahead of time and refrigerate. The pasta and vegetables sucked up all of the chicken broth. I needed to add almost 2 cups to get it back to soup consistency when I reheated it. The other problem was that all of the vegetables aside from the carrots became mushy.

I'll definitely try making minestrone soup again, but I won't cook it ahead of time. :)

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