Monday, March 21, 2022

Monday Recipe Post - Classic Homemade Minestrone

Yay! It is the first day of Spring.
Happy Spring Everyone!

The day was chilly and cold when I made this soup (Wednesday, March 9th, 2022). I found it at The Kitchen Magpie hosted by Karlynn Johnston.  You can find the original at her website here.  I enjoyed browsing through her many recipes, and it was a wonderful soup, one we will be making again.

Classic Homemade Minestrone Soup Recipe

Serves 8

Calories: approximately 126 per serving

The following is a guideline.  It usually takes me longer to prepare the ingredients than what is stated.  I don't time myself, I just start early enough, and spread my prep time out in stages.  

Preparation time: 20 minutes 

Cooking time: 40 minutes

Total time: 1 hour

2 tablespoons butter

1 small white onion, chopped

½ cup chopped celery

1 cup chopped carrots

1 cup diced zucchini

½ cup fresh green beans, chopped

1 tablespoon minced garlic

1 (19 ounce) can cannellini beans (white or red, drained and rinsed (I used garbanzo beans)

1 (28 ounce) can diced tomatoes, and also add its juice to the pot 

2 tablespoons tomato paste

1-1/2 cups cubed Russet potatoes

½ cup shredded cabbage (optional)

4 cups vegetable broth

2 teaspoons Italian seasoning

½ cup small pasta shells

½ cup grated Parmesan cheese

1 teaspoon salt, or to taste

Black pepper, to taste

In the bottom of a large soup pot, on medium-high heat, melt the butter.  

Add in the onion and fry until softened.

Add in the celery, carrots, zucchini, green beans and minced garlic. Fry until the garlic is fragrant, two to three minutes. 

Add in all of the remaining ingredients except for the pasta shells. Mix everything completely.

Simmer on the stove until the vegetables are tender, around 20-30 minutes. Once they are tender, add the uncooked pasta. 

Simmer for another 9-10 minutes until the pasta is cooked to your liking.

Remove from the stove. 

Ladle into bowls and serve topped with a sprinkle of Parmesan, but let it sit for as long as it takes not be too hot to eat.

What did we think?  Delicious!  You can change the vegetables to use your own favorites.  I kept them to what was already listed, except I didn’t use the cabbage, which was optional.

I usually add extra vegetables, and consequently more broth, how much to your own taste so you be the judge on that. We love lots of veggies and I put in an extra handful of pasta, plus added more tomato paste.  

I had a can of garbanzo beans in the pantry.  I used that instead of going to the store just for a can of cannellini.

For the pasta there was half a packet of Lumache left from another recipe (see above before cooking).  I bought mine on Amazon at this link, and the package can be seen below.

It is larger than the normal pasta shell we buy, and we like it very much.  It seemed to take longer to cook than what it said on the package.  I like al dente but it was too al dente for both our tastes.  Here again, you be the judge as you may like it that way  

I read the following at this website.

"Another shell-shaped pasta, lumache is actually named after a snail.  Many Italian chefs looked outside their kitchen window for pasta inspiration, basing their forms on the plants, animals and apparently snails around them.  This cut has a cool shape with a pinched end, which helps trap sauce in the main part of the shell.  It comes in sizes ranging from tiny snails to the Brazilian rain-forest, man-eating monster jumbo lumache size."

I can attest to the fact that it traps the sauce, or as in our case, both vegetables and soup, as the smaller pieces of vegetable did fall inside and filled up with hot liquid.  This, however, only added to its enjoyment.  I advise caution if your soup is hot.  It is a good idea to cool it as we would any meal, before eating.  

It goes on to say: 

"Originally they are from the Piedmont region of northwest Italy.  Bordering France, the love of snails is a francophone influence, or people starving in that area weren't picky back in the day.  The Cherasco snail festival takes place here every year.  Intrepid hunters of these shelled gastropods will also collect wild mushrooms and truffles along the way.  Though truffles only give off a detectable odor a few times a day and are below ground.  So unless you have a dog or a pig with you at the right time, good luck."

This last part made me smile because I once read years ago that truffle hunters had such difficulty trying to get truffles away from the pigs, that they started training dogs instead.  I found information on truffles at this website. It is very interesting but there are a lot of advertisements.

I have gone on a bit, but if we eat something that I am not familiar with and in this case, not the regular pasta we would normally put in a soup, my curiosity gets peaked.  I start looking into that particular food's history which can lead me elsewhere, as in this case, truffles.  

There were leftovers and it was even better the next day. The pasta shells get a little bit larger as they absorb the soup, but do not lose in texture, and definitely not in taste.

We shared a French roll which I cut in half lengthwise, spread with a little butter, a sprinkling of garlic powder and grated Parmesan cheese.  I toasted the halves under the broiler for a couple of minutes, until the top started getting brown. You can also use a slice of regular bread instead of the roll, which we have done several times over the years.   

That's it!

I wish you all a happy and healthy week.


  1. I am making it this week! Along with the bread as well!! Can't wait.

  2. Ohhhhh, yum!! As I've mentioned before, I love ALL soups. This recipeisa keeper!!!

  3. Yum. One of my very favourite soups. When it finally cools down here I will make some.

    1. A favorite of ours too :) Lovely to see you posting again Sue.

  4. Replies
    1. Muito obrigado! Um abraço e uma boa semana para você também :)

  5. Looks nice. Waiting for cold weather to make some soup, still warm down here @ 23degC

    1. Wonderful Margaret, lovely to have warm weather. It is getting that way here too :)

  6. That looks like a perfectly warming and delicious meal!

  7. Hello,
    Your soup looks delicious. I have never heard of Lumache. Thanks for sharing.
    Take care, have a happy new week!

    1. Thanks Eileen and you are very welcome. I wish you the same :)

  8. Minestrone soup is a great way to use up veggies and now you have given me the idea to make a pot this week, especially since we are in for a rainy day mid-week. I agree that you can add whatever veggies you want and we too will be skipping cabbage.

  9. delish delish and i have never even seen lumache before

    1. Thanks Sandra :) It was new to me also. I found out about it only a few months ago.

  10. Wow what a great sounding meal, D

    1. Thank you Cloudia, I am happy you think so :)

  11. I have just made a huge pot of Garbure, a speciality of the peasants of South-East France. It lasts us for several days. It is on my cookery website which I think you have visited in the past. Your recipe does sound good though.
    I hope all is well. Cheers Diane

    1. I am intrigued Diane. I will look at your recipe blog. All is well thank you. I hope the same for you :)

  12. Ohhhhh delicious sounding!!!!

    And it's lovely, to have something spark our interest, and send us looking for more info about it.

    Mmmmm, the bread looks/sounds delightful. I miss many sorts of 'real' bread, having to eat Gluten Free. They do have many G/F versions, and after all these years, I guess I don't really remember the original. :-)

    🌸 🌷 🌼 🌺 🌸

    1. I agree, always fun to go a little further to see what we can find out :) Thank you BB. I have a few family members who can no longer eat gluten. They now make their own gluten free bread. Also it is very nice that the stores and restaurant menus give so many options now.

  13. Many thanks for sharing the recipe.
    We enjoyed a lovely mushroom soup recently :)

    Enjoy your week.

    All the best Jan

    1. You are very welcome Jan. I love mushroom soup. If you posted it I will definitely put it on my list :) You enjoy your week and all the best to you also :)

  14. Sounds good, but boy it is hot here now, so I'll save this until summer in Oregon (our seasons are so mixed up, since it is often cooler in summer there than it is in spring here.) I've never heard of lumache but know we'd like it! We always do have on hand one of the more common varieties that catch and hold the sauce. I enjoyed learning more about pasta which we cannot live without in any season!

    1. I know folks enjoy soups all the year round, but it is definitely a cold weather soup for me. I could make a gazpacho, and I remember making a strawberry soup once that were delicious cold soups. I haven't checked your temperatures out in Florida yet. One thing I cannot take is the humidity here in the summer months. Thanks Sallie, hope you are keeping cool down there :)


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