When Eric and I were in the process of moving, we had to eat out more than I care to admit. The biggest reason for this was the fact that we had to special order a refrigerator that would fit in the space we had. For two people that love to cook, eating out so frequently got old fast. We were ecstatic once our new refrigerator arrived and we were finally able to buy ingredients to cook a decent meal. Sadly, we weren’t anywhere close to having the kitchen unpacked when the refrigerator arrived. Since neither one of us could stomach eating out yet again, we unpacked a few things and decided to cook this simple soup instead.
Let me start off by saying that, while this soup is supposed to have tortellini, we could only find ravioli when we made this. So you’ll notice that the pasta in my picture looks pretty big, and that’s because it is. However, this didn’t bother either of us because we were just happy to have a home cooked meal. This soup is incredibly easy – we made it without a fully functioning kitchen, if that tells you anything. The only change I made was to increase the liquid by half a cup, and this is just a personal preference because I like my soups to be a little brothier. The combination of vegetables, cannellini beans and pasta in this soup make it filling without making it heavy. It also makes excellent leftovers. All that, and it can be made in under half an hour.
- YIELD: 4-6 servings
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 carrots, peeled and cut into ½-inch pieces
2 stalks of celery, cut into ½-inch pieces
1 medium onion, minced
5 ounces mushrooms, sliced
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon minced fresh oregano, or 1 teaspoon dried
3¼ cups low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
2¾ cups vegetable juice (like V8)
1 (15-ounce) can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
1 (9-ounce) package fresh cheese tortellini (preferably whole wheat)
1 medium zucchini, halved lengthwise, seeded, and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
½ cup pesto
Freshly grated Parmesan, for serving
Heat the oil in a large Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the carrots, celery, onion, 1/4 teaspoon of salt and pepper to taste. Cook for 3-5 minutes, until just softened.
Add the mushrooms and continue cooking until all the vegetables have softened, 5-6 additional minutes. Add the garlic and oregano and cook about 30 seconds, until fragrant.
Pour in the broth, making sure to scrape up any browned bits. Stir in the vegetable juice and beans and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook for about 10 minutes.
Add the tortellini and zucchini and continue simmering until tender, another 5-7 minutes. Taste and add salt and pepper as needed.
Divide among serving bowls and top each portion with a spoonful of pesto and a sprinkling of Parmesan before serving.