There is nothing better on a cold day than a good cup of hearty soup. This recipe is a play on Italian Minestrone soup and can be served as an prelude to your meal or simply as a meal on its own. What I love about this recipe is its so easy and just simmers so you can multitask while it cooks.
What You'll Need:
1/3 pound sliced pancetta cubed
2 medium red onions, diced
4 celery ribs, cubed
3 medium carrots, shave the skin and chop
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 bunch Swiss chard. Separate the leafs from the stems. Set leafs to one side and dice the stems
6 garlic cloves chopped
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 can whole tomatoes in juice
3 quart hot water
1 quart vegetable broth
5 cups chopped cabbage
3 cups coarsely chopped kale
1 can cannelloni beans, rinsed and drained
1 small box of little pasta...I used stars
In a big pot, add olive oil and heat. Add pancetta, onions, celery, and carrots over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Once onions begin to become translucent, add swiss chard steams to pancetta pot. Add garlic and a dash of salt and pepper. Continue Cooking for approximately 45 minutes will all the vegetables cook together and soften. Stir occasionally to keep the bottom of the pot from burning.
Push vegetables to one side of pot and add tomato paste to cleared area and cook, stirring constantly, until it starts to caramelize, about 2 minutes.
Stir paste into vegetables and cook, stirring, 2 minutes. Add can of tomatoes and juices. Add water and vegetable broth. Bring to simmer. Add cabbage, kale, and 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese. Simmer, covered, until greens are tender, about 30 minutes.
Coarsely chop chard leaves and stir into soup along with beans. Simmer, partially covered, 10 minutes. Season soup with salt and pepper. Add pasta right before serving.