Hearty Pasta Vegetable Soup

Pasta varieties in jars

This is a variation on a classic Italian vegetable soup (or sometimes stew) called ribollita. This one includes potatoes, eggplant, carrots, and zucchini, among others; feel free to vary the vegetables according to season.

Serves: 6 to 8

  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 large carrots, diced
  • 2 medium potatoes, scrubbed and diced
  • 2 large stalks celery, strings removed, and diced
  • 2 cups diced eggplant
  • 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • 1/2 teaspoon each: paprika; dried basil and oregano
  • 2 cups fusilli, rotini, shells, or other short pasta shape
  • 1 small zucchini, quartered lengthwise and thinly sliced
  • 1 cup frozen green peas
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh parsley
  • Several fresh basil leaves, thinly sliced
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Vegan Parmesan cheese for topping, optional

Heat the oil in a large soup pot. Add the onion and garlic and sauté over medium-low heat until golden.

Add the carrots, potatoes, celery, eggplant, and 4 cups water. Bring to a slow boil, then stir in the crushed tomatoes and seasonings. Lower the heat, cover, and simmer gently until the vegetables are nearly tender, about 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, cook the pasta separately in plenty of rapidly simmering water until al dente, then drain.

Add the zucchini and peas to the soup, and continue to simmer gently until all the vegetables are tender but not overdone, about 10 minutes longer.

Stir the cooked pasta into the soup. Adjust the consistency with more water if necessary.

Stir in the parsley and basli, then season to taste with salt and pepper and serve. Pass around some Parmesan cheese for topping the soup, if desired.

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