Happy 2012, everyone! I hope everyone had a great weekend, and now of course it's time to buckle down with your resolutions. Lose weight. Get more organized. Save more money. The usual, right? I'm actually not really big into resolutions, per se, but I do think it's important to set goals. And did you know that you are 60% more likely to reach your goals if you write them down? I totally made up that statistic, but the sentiment is true. I find that writing down specific, tangible goals definitely makes a big difference, versus just having vague ideas of things I want to achieve.
So anyway, if you made the resoltion/goal to eat healthier, eat more dinners at home, eat more veggies, and/or cook more, then this soup is a great place to start. It is healthy, tasty, filling, and perhaps most importantly, it's on the table in under 30 minutes. This particular version uses a combination of carrots, onions, celery, mushrooms, and zucchini, but I think pretty much any combination of veggies would work. This would be a great soup to make when you're trying to clean out the veggie drawer in your fridge. It also calls for cannellini beans, but again, I think several other varieties would be just as good.
If you need some healthy inspiration, I've updated my Featured Recipes page to showcase some of my favorite healthy dinners.
adapted from Cook's Illustrated, Soups and Stews
- 1 Tbs olive oil
- 2 carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 2 stalks of celery, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 1 medium onion, minced
- 5 oz mushrooms, sliced
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 Tbs minced fresh oregano, or 1 tsp dried
- 3 cups low-sodium chicken broth
- 2 1/2 cups V8 vegetable juice
- 1 (15-oz) can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 (9-oz) package fresh cheese tortellini (preferably whole wheat)
- 1 medium zucchini, halved lengthwise, seeded, and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- salt and ground black pepper
- 1/2 cup pesto (homemade, or if store-bought, use the refrigerated variety)
- grated Parmesan, for serving
Stir in the broth, scraping up any browned bits. Stir in the vegetable juice and beans and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook about 10 minutes.
Add the tortellini and zucchini and continue to simmer until they are cooked through and tender, 5-7 minutes.
Season with salt and pepper to taste. Divide among serving bowls and top each portion with a spoonful of pesto and a sprinkling of Parmesan before serving.