I don’t actually like soup much. Sure, I like warm things with lots of flavors and textures, and sometimes, a soup falls into this category. But mostly, I don’t prefer a meal that is comprised entirely of the same thing (Read: split pea).
This soup was not that. It felt more like a broth-y pasta dish, earnest with vegetables and crazy good with a dollop of pesto at the end. It’s also budget friendly, quick, and contains all three of my required meal components (vegetables, protein, carbs) in one tidy pot. You could easily make this GF by using brown rice noodles. You could omit the pesto and cheese if you’re avoiding dairy, but they were paramount in the deliciousness of this dish, so I would recommend against it.
1 medium yellow onion, diced
2 stalks celery, chopped small
1 large or two small carrots, chopped small
2 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
1 big glug white wine (if you must measure, it was probably 1/4 cup)
Bouquet garni (a small bundle herbs tied with twine; I used rosemary, sage, and thyme).
4 cups chicken or vegetable stock (I love this brand)
1 15-oz can white beans
Large handful curly kale, chopped small
6 oz orecchiectte or other small pasta
Parmesan or Romano cheese, for topping
Pesto, for topping
Olive oil, salt, and fresh pepper for cooking and seasoning
Heat a few tablespoons olive oil in a stock pot. Add onions, carrots, celery and bouquet garni; season with a few shakes of salt and sweat until soft and beginning to take color, about 7 minutes. Deglaze with wine and add garlic. Add stock and beans, stir and turn heat down to medium low. Simmer for about 10 minutes. Check for seasoning, and adjust as needed. Turn heat up to medium high, and add kale and pasta. Using the pasta’s package directions as a guide, cook until pasta is al dente (this took me 10 minutes with small-sized orecchiette), stirring occasionally. You may need to add a bit more water or stock if the soup looks like it’s getting too thick. Ladle into bowls and top with a good dollop of pesto, a sprinkle of cheese, and a grind of black pepper.