When you follow a recipe and create something delicious, you feel happy. But when you kind of make something up and just throw stuff together and something delicious appears, you feel even happier.
This soup was one of those 'I'll just add some of this-and-that' moments. It was based on a recipe, but every little addition or thing I left out took it further and further from that recipe. Their recipe was for an Italian beef broth soup with macaroni and vegetables. Mine somehow became a vegetarian, creamy Italian soup with NO macaroni and even more vegetables.
It was, luckily, still delicious, and suited the focaccia I made the other day perfectly. Everyone enjoyed it, and Eva (my younger, pasta and rice loving sister) chose it OVER a bowl of pasta. Hurrah!
I think I'll make this again, although chances are it'll change a little every time. Treat this recipe as a guideline, make it suit you! Serve it as a broth if you desire, or add some pasta. Use the vegetables you happen to have on hand and substitute anything you dislike. Use beef or chicken stock if you so desire. Make this soup yours!
Italian Vegetable Soup
Based on: http://www.tasteofhome.com/Recipes/Simple-Italian-Vegetable-Soup
- In a Dutch oven, saute carrots and onion in oil until tender. Add garlic; cook 1 minute longer. Stir in the broth, tomatoes, water, zucchini, mushroom, basil, salt, oregano and pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 15 minutes.
- Stir in the kidney beans, spinach and parsley. Cover and cook 15 minutes longer or until spinach is cooked to your liking. Optional: Using a stick blender, blend the soup until it reaches your preferred consistency. Garnish with cheese and serve with a crusty bread or focaccia. Yield: 4 servings*
* Obviously, if you edit it a lot, the yield may change. Keep this in mind!