Mid-March marks my most restless time of year. As soon as it stays light later and the weather turns nice, and all I can think of come 3 o’clock is wanting to skip out of work. Unfortunately, there are usually basketball tournaments on at this time, which does not help alleviate the distraction.
Then I start thinking about how I wish that instead of sitting at my desk I was sitting at a bar in Key West. And then I think, well, why not take a few months and just go out West? To make matters worse, this year I checked my Instagram feed in hopes that pictures of sweet and savory foods would distract me from my wanderlust. Instead, I was inundated with pictures from SXSW, and all of that creativity was like wanderlust caffeine.
And all I’ve got is soup. Spring is bearing down upon us; it’s not soup season at all. However, soup is easy for me to make, and I like that I can freeze half the batch and for later. Over the past few weeks, I have made this copycat Pasta e Fagioli soup, a cauliflower soup, a lentil soup, and a roasted red pepper and sweet potato soup. You have been warned that there will be plenty o’ soup coming your way.
When I last left you, I mentioned I was trying to look at my diet with an eye towards health. My healthy eating coach provided this soup recipe, and I could not wait to try it. If I can’t eat a bottomless basket of breadsticks, at least I can have soup with pasta! Whole wheat pasta, but still, in the soup it does not matter. Enjoy!
Pasta e Fagioli Soup
- 3/4 cup whole wheat macaroni pasta (or other pasta shape of your choice)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 5 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 3 carrots, peeled and sliced into coins
- 3 stalks celery, diced
- 4 cups chicken or vegetable broth
- 1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce
- 2 (15-ounce) cans diced tomatoes
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 (15-ounce) can red kidney beans
- 1 (15-ounce) can cannellini or great northern beans
- 1/4 cup dried basil
- Boil the pasta untill al-dente, then drain and set aside. (I like to toss a few drops of olive oil with cooked pasta to keep it from sticking.
- In a large pot, heat the tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat.
- Add the garlic, onion, carrots, and celery and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender, about 4-5 minutes.
- Stir in the broth, tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, oregano, and thyme.
- Season with salt and pepper to taste, then bring the pot to a boil, reduce heat, and allow to simmer, covered, for 15 minutes.
- Stir in the cooked pasta, beans, basil, and allow to heat through.
- Serve immediately.
You can also add one pound of lean ground turkey to this recipe. Simply add the ground turkey to the skillet before adding the oil, garlic, and onion. Cook until no longer pink, about 6-8 minutes. Then continue with the recipe as written.