Christine Dabney wrote:
On Sat, 11 Oct 2008 08:54:21 -0400, "Nancy Young"
Am I invited? I've wanted to make the Cook's Illustrated
minestrone for a long time. You put parmagiana rinds in to
thicken and flavor it. I saw a package of the rinds for sale
at a local supermarket, which will come in handy as I don't
Of course you are!!!!! You are one of the original
I didn't want to just butt in. Here's the recipe I will be making,
using the pasta option:
Classic Minestrone from Cook's Illustrated:
Adding pasta or rice makes this hearty soup appropriate as a dinner.
If the soup seems too thick after adding the pasta or rice, stir in a
little water. Pasta and rice do not hold up well when refrigerated or
frozen, so serve this soup as soon as the pasta or rice is tender.
Serves 6 to 8
2 small leeks (or 1 large), white and light green parts sliced thin
crosswise (about 3/4 cup) and washed thoroughly
2 medium carrots , peeled and cut into small dice (about 3/4 cup)
2 small onions , peeled and cut into small dice (about 3/4 cup)
2 medium ribs celery , trimmed and cut into small dice (about 3/4 cup)
1 medium baking potato , peeled and cut into medium dice (about 1 1/4
1 medium zucchini , trimmed and cut into medium dice (about 1 1/4 cups)
3 cups stemmed spinach leaves , cut into thin strips
(28 ounce) can whole tomatoes , packed in juice, drained, and chopped
8 cups water
1 Parmesan cheese rind , about 5 x 2 inches
1/2 cup Arborio rice (or small pasta shape, such as elbows, ditalini,
1 can (15 ounces) cannellini beans , drained and rinsed (about 1 1/2
1/4 cup basil pesto (or 1 tablespoon minced fresh rosemary mixed with
1 teaspoon minced garlic and 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil)
Ground black pepper
In addition to grated cheese as a topping, swirling pesto or a
combination of rosemary and garlic into the finished soup builds flavor.
1. Bring vegetables, tomatoes, water, cheese rind, and 1 teaspoon salt
to boil in a soup kettle or pot. Reduce heat to medium-low; simmer,
uncovered and stirring occasionally, until vegetables are tender but
still hold their shape, about 1 hour. Add arborio rice or pasta and
continue cooking until rice is tender but still a bit firm in the
center of each grain, about 20 minutes, or until pasta is al dente, 8
to 12 minutes, depending on shape.
2. Add beans and cook just until heated through, about 5 minutes.
Remove pot from heat. Remove and discard cheese rind. Stir in pesto
(or rosemary-garlic mixture). Adjust seasonings, adding pepper and
more salt, if necessary. Ladle soup into bowls and serve immediately.