Old Chicago Minestrone| Christy Rost
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 cup chopped celery, about 2 stalks
- 1 medium onion, peeled and chopped
- 3 large carrots, rinsed, peeled and sliced
- 5 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
- 1 28-ounce can peeled tomatoes, chopped
- 1 15-ounce can petite diced tomatoes
- 6 cups vegetable or chicken broth
- 1 cup water
- 1 5.5-ounce can tomato juice
- 1 tablespoon dried oregano
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- Dash of sugar
- 1 15.5-ounce can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 15.5-ounce can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 15.5-ounce can cannellini or Great Northern beans, drained and rinsed
- kosher salt, to taste
- 5 mustard or kale leaves, rinsed and chopped (optional)
- 2 cups small pasta shells, cooked and drained
Preheat a large stockpot over medium heat, add olive oil, and swirl to coat the bottom of the pot. Stir in celery, onion, and carrots. Cook vegetables 4 to 5 minutes until they are just tender. Add garlic, stir, and cook 1 minute more.
Add tomatoes, vegetable broth, water, and tomato juice. Season the soup with oregano, black pepper, and sugar. Cover and bring to a gentle boil, reduce the heat to low, and simmer 30 minutes or until the vegetables have softened.
Stir in garbanzo beans, kidney beans, and cannellini or Great Northern beans. Cover and simmer 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in mustard leaves and cooked pasta. Season with kosher salt and additional oregano if needed. Cover and heat 10 minutes more.
Yield: 8 to 10 servings