Wednesday 19 May 2010

Minestrone soup

Delicious and healthy, an awesome lunchtime special

This has recently become one of my favourite lunches as it is really easy to make as well as packed full of goodness. It's also gentle on the finances and will keep you full for hours. I like to make a big batch and freeze it in double portions, that way I'm never stuck for a quick lunch option when I'm home. I use chickpeas in this recipe as I like how they stay intact and retain their shape. Cannellini beans or butter beans would also work well but don't overcook them as they turn to mush easily enough.

- 1 onion
- Couple of cloves of garlic
- 2 large carrots
- 4 sticks of celery
- Tin of chickpeas
- Small handful of spaghetti
- Tin of chopped tomatoes (or passata)
- 2 tbsp tomato puree
- 1 tsp sugar
- Chicken stock

- Heat some olive oil in a large saucepan on high heat.
- Chuck the onion, garlic, celery and carrots into a food processor and blitz until they are all chopped really finely. Add them to the oil, stir well and season with salt and pepper. Cook for 5 mins.
- Turn the heat down to medium. Drain and rinse the chickpeas and add them to the pot.
- Chuck in the tin of tomatoes and about the same amount again of chicken stock - add enough stock until the mixture is loose enough to be a soup rather than a sauce.
- Add 1 tsp of sugar, the tomato puree and another bit of salt and put a lid on. Cook for 10 mins at a simmer.
- After 10 mins, break the spaghetti up with your hands and add it to the soup. Pop the lid back on for 12 mins, stirring once or twice.
- Serve hot in big bowls with a side order of Eastenders and a crossword.

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