Minestrone is probably my number one favorite soup, which is saying a lot, because I love soup! This is adapted from my mom's recipe. I made it last night and Mr. Mordecai proclaimed it just right--no added salt or pepper required! If you like, serve in bread bowls or with lemon-poppyseed scones.
- 1 pound Italian sausage
- 1 onion, diced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 carrots, diced
- 2 stalks celery, diced
- 1 can green beans
- 6-8 cups water
- ½ head cabbage, chopped
- 2 15-ounce cans tomatoes
- ½ 10-ounce package frozen chopped spinach (optional)
- 1 small zucchini, diced
- 1 teaspoon each beef and chicken bouillon
- ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper
- ½ teaspoon oregano
- ½ teaspoon basil
- ½ teaspoon rosemary
- ½ teaspoon thyme
- 1 bay leaf
- 1½ cups cooked beans or 2 15-ounce cans beans, drained (I like some combination of kidney, small red, great northern, or garbanzo)
- 1 cup pasta shells (optional)
- In large pot, cook sausage. Add onion, garlic, carrots, celery, and potatoes. Cook about 20 min., stirring occasionally.
- Add remaining ingredients. Heat to boiling.
- Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer 40 or more minutes or until all vegetables are very tender.
- Add pasta if desired. Cook 10-15 minutes longer.