Minestrone all’italiana

The first of many “comforting” warm soups of the coming winter.  Minestrone all’Italiana is a healthy, rich and light main course, very easy to prepare. It has a lot of variants in the different Italian regions. This is a very basic and “standard” recipe, I mix it with rice, but you can change the ingredients with your fantasy and on the base of the season and produce available. Many variants of vegetables soups and minestrone will take us over the coming cold season!
If you use all fresh produce you need more time to wash and chop everything in very small pieces. In alternative you can totally use a bag of frozen mixed vegetables and add a few fresh ones.

water 1 and 1/2 lt
carrots 2
onion, one large
beans, mixed if you like 1/2 can (about 50 gr.)
potatoes, 2 medium sized
zucchini 2
celery 2 or 3 stalks
tomatoes (sauce or fresh chopped) 50 gr.
e.v.o. oil
garlic 1 clove
bouillon cubes 2 (or a vegetable base 2 tsp)
salt and pepper
parmigiano reggiano (optional)

(If you use mixed frozen vegetables add only onion, garlic, all fresh herbs and tomatoes).

Boil the water in which you have added the bouillon cubes. Wash and dice in very small pieces all vegetables and pour them into the boiling water. Let boil gently for about 40 minutes (consider the same cooking time for both fresh and frozen vegetables). Meanwhile chop the fresh herbs (celery, parsley, basil) and add them into the minestrone about 5 minutes before turning off the heat. Adjust with salt and pepper, and sprinkle with olive oil. You can serve minestrone with bread crostini, or mix it with rice or small pasta (in this case, for this quantity of minestrone cook ca 150 gr. rice or 200 gr. pasta).


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