Minestrone with Pesto
A hearty soup by Justine Schofield from Everyday Gourmet
- 60 minutes
- 4 servings
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 200 grams pancetta, finely chopped
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 2 carrots, finely chopped
- 3 stalks of celery, finely chopped
- 4 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 sprigs thyme
- 200 grams can of crushed tomatoes
- 2 liters chicken stock and/or water
- 1 400 grams can of cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
- 2 nest of vermicelli
- 4 stalks of kale (or Swiss chard, cavelo nero, English spinach), shredded including stalks
- ½ small clove garlic
- 2 large handfuls of basil leaves
- 50 grams pine nuts, toasted
- 40 grams Parmesan, grated
- Salt and pepper
- 120 milliliters extra virgin olive oil
- Heat oil in a large pot over a medium heat and add the pancetta and onion and cook for 4-5 minute to soften. Add the carrot, celery, garlic, bay leaf and thyme, turn the heat to low and cook for 10-15 until all the vegetables are soft. Now turn the heat back up to medium and add the crushed tomatoes and cook off for a minute before adding the stock and cannellini beans and a good pinch of salt and pepper. Gently simmer for 35-40 minutes with the lid on.
- For the pesto, pound the garlic with a good pinch of salt until a past forms. Now add the basil leaves and bruise and smash. Add the pinenuts and pound until a rough paste forms. Work in the Parmesan before slowly adding in the oil to emulsify.
- To finish the soup add the vermicelli and cook for 2 minutes before adding the silverbeet white stalk followed by their leaves. Once the pasta is al dente serve in shallow bowls with a big dollop of pesto.
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