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Minestrone Soup

Ingredients for 4 persons

1 clove of garlic

1 red onion

2 small carrots

2 sticks of celery

1 courgette

1 small leek

1 large potato

400 g of cannellini beans

olive oil

½ teaspoon dried oregano

1 fresh bay leaf

400 g tins of plum tomatoes

1 litre organic vegetable stock

1 large handful of seasonal greens, such as green cabbage, chard

½ a bunch of fresh basil, optional

How to make it

  1. Peel and finely chop the garlic and onion. Trim the carrots, celery and courgette and add the vegetables in a large bowl.
  2. Cut the ends off the leek, quarter it lengthways; wash it under running water, then cut into 1cm slices. Add to the bowl.
  3. Scrub and dice the potato. Drain the cannellini beans, then set aside.
  4. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a large saucepan over a medium heat.
  5. Add the garlic, onion, carrots, celery, courgette, leek, oregano and bay and cook slowly for about 15 minutes, or until the vegetables have softened, stirring occasionally.
  6. Add the potato, cannellini beans and plum tomatoes, and pour all of them in the vegetable stock. Stir well, breaking up the tomatoes with the back of a spoon.
  7. Cover with a lid and bring everything slowly to the boil, then simmer for about 30 minutes, or until the potato is cooked through.
  8. Remove and discard any tough stalks bits from the greens, then roughly chop.
  9. To check the potato is cooked, pierce a chunk of it with a sharp knife – if it pierces easily, it’s done.
  10. Pick over the basil leaves (if using) and stir through. Season to taste with sea salt and black pepper, then serve with a grating of Parmesan and a slice of wholemeal bread, if you like.
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