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Minestrone alla Emiliana: The Big Northern Soup

                                                   

Minestrone literally means ‘big soup’ in Italian (minestra [soup] + -one). I.e. the soup with many ingredients.

There is no set recipe for minestrone, since it is often made out of whatever vegetables are in season or available from region to region. It can be vegetarian, or contain meat. Emilia is a region of Northern Italy (along with Romagna), with Bologna as its capital.

This version of the dish is a wonderful, hearty soup that can be served as a starter, or nearly hold it’s own as a main course with some rustic bread alongside. The soup is wonderfully aromatic, and the vegetables each bring their own texture and flavour to the party, collectively making for one fantastic (and big) soup.

                                            

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Minestrone alla Emiliana

Serves: 6 to 8

Ingredients:

1/8 cup olive oil
1 onion, thinly sliced
3 carrots, sliced
3 stalk celery, sliced
2 russet potatoes, peeled and diced
2 zucchini, halved lengthwise and sliced
6 ounces green beans, topped & tailed
1 savoy cabbage, shredded
8 cups beef broth
2 cups canned whole plum tomatoes, with juices
Salt and pepper, to taste
5 ounces Navy beans

Preparation:

  1. Combine all ingredients in crockpot. Set crockpot on Low and cook for 8 to 10 hours, or overnight if serving for lunch.
  2. Optional: serve with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.