Mom's Mighty Minestrone
Updated: Dec 30, 2021
Minestrone is a thick vegetable soup of Italian origin and, because there is no set recipe, it can vary widely even across Italy depending on the ingredients used, traditional cooking times and the season. The soup ranges from a thick, dense texture with very boiled-down vegetables, to a more broth-like soup with large quantities of diced, lightly cooked vegetables. It can also include meats.
This inclusion of proscuitto in this recipe gives the soup a wonderful intense flavour that works really well with the vegetables and kidney beans.
Ingredients (6 servings)
100g prosciutto, diced (with fat on)
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for serving
1 large onion
1 large leek, white and pale green parts only
2 celery ribs
2 small carrots
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon oregano
¼ teaspoon crushed hot red pepper flakes
1 tin chopped tomatoes in juice
1 tablespoon tomato paste
6-8 cups low salt chicken stock
1 bay leaf
1 tin kidney beans
1½ cups packed thinly sliced kale, thick stems removed
Sea salt & freshly ground black pepper
Dice the onion, leek, celery, carrots and courgette into 1cm chunks.
Cook the prosciutto and oil together in a soup pot over medium heat just until the prosciutto is lightly browned, about 3 minutes.
Then, add the onion and leeks. Cook, stirring occasionally until softened, about 3 minutes.
Add the celery, carrots, garlic, oregano, and pepper flakes, and cook until the vegetables are beginning to soften, about 3 minutes more.
Add the courgette and cook until it begins to soften about 3 minutes.
Add the tomatoes and their liquid and the tomato paste, bring to a boil and cook 3 minutes.
Add the stock and bay leaf. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low. Simmer until the flavours are blended, about 1 hour.
Stir in the beans and kale and cook until tender, about 5 minutes.