As you may have noticed, I have an obsession with Italian food. When my sister and I were young, we would go to this little Italian restaurant called Barone's with our dad for dinner on Wednesday nights. He always started with a bowl of minestrone. There is something so comforting about chunks of veggies, noodles, and heaps of parmesan cheese and being able to call it soup! Well the other day I woke up with a strange craving for Minestrone. But, you know me, I had to totally tweak it and make it my own! AND, I did it in the slow cooker, which made it totally melt in my mouth and made the house smell like heaven!!! (Don't be afraid of the amount for each seasoning, they'll cook down and it's for a LOT of food!) What's even better is that you can freeze whatever you don't eat and pull it out in the winter when it's chilly out.
What you'll need:
1 32 oz. can low sodium tomato sauce
1 16 oz. can chopped tomatoes (again, low sodium)
2 large carrots, chopped
1 large onion, chopped
5 gold potatoes, peeled, and chopped
2 celery stalks, chopped
1 cup french green beans, chopped (you may use frozen!)
1 can white kidney beans, drained and rinsed
5-6 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbs. kosher salt
1 tbs. pepper
1 tbs. dried oregano (and any other Italian seasonings you have on hand)
1 carton low sodium veggie broth
Any type of small whole wheat noodles
1 tbs. fresh basil, chopped
1. Start chopping your vegetables. When doing so, try to keep them all the same size so they cook at the same pace.
2. Begin with pouring the tomato sauce on the bottom of the slow cooker.Next, dump all of the veggies in, stirring slowly.
3. Drain and rinse the kidney beans, chop the garlic, and add to the slow cooker.
4. Top with the can of chopped tomatoes, veggie broth, salt, pepper, and dried seasonings. Cover and cook on low for about 8 hours. At about the 6 hour mark, add the green beans, and at the 30 minute mark, add the nodles. After the 8 hours, turn off (or to the "keep warm" setting if your has one).
5. Top with some fresh basil and grated parmesan. Serve with a good crunchy French bread and you're good to go!
|oh, and ALWAYS serve with white serving pieces. it looks very elegant :)|