What better way to make a soup then to go to the farmers market, see what vegetables look the freshest, bring them home and create something delicious? This is just what we did on Saturday. We first visited the organic farm stand at the market and picked up the zucchini, carrots and onions. It was then onto the local farmers stand where we found cremini mushrooms, eggplant and beautiful green beans. All that shopping made our stomachs growl, so we went to the wood fired pizza stand and ate a fresh tomato, feta, and spinach pizza while sitting on the curb and watching the people go by with their purchases.
It was then on to Vicki’s kitchen were we finished the morning chopping vegetables and making the soup. It is always more fun (and easier) cooking together and we encourage you to do the same.
This soup is very hearty and makes a healthy, flavorful meal. I recently served it to a group of friends who came in for lunch after a morning of playing golf on a chili, drizzly day. This was the perfect soup to warm them up and fill them up after chasing that little white ball!
- 2 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 yellow onions, minced
- 4 carrots – cut into one inch pieces
- 2 zucchini – cut into one inch pieces
- 1/2 pound of green beans – cut into one inch pieces
- 1 eggplant – peeled and cut into one inch pieces
- 1/2 of medium head green cabbage, shredded
- 4 ounces mushrooms, sliced
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 cup canned fire roasted tomatoes, chopped
- 3 quarts chicken stock or water
- 2 tablespoon basil
- 1/4 cup arborio rice
- 2 cup canned white or cannellini beans, well rinsed
- 4 poached, boneless skinless chicken breasts cut into bite sized pieces (see our poached chicken blog listed under entrees)
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
- Several dashes of hot sauce
- 1/2 cup pesto (pre-made)
- Freshly grated parmesan cheese
In a soup pot, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onions and cook for 3 minutes. Add the carrots, zucchini, green beans, and eggplant and sauté for 5 minutes. Stir frequently. Add cabbage and sauté until soft. Add mushrooms and sauté for several minutes. Add garlic and stir for another minute.
Add tomatoes, stock and basil and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to simmer and cook until vegetables are tender and soup has slightly thickened – about 15 minutes.
Add rice and beans and cook for 15 minutes. Add chicken, salt, pepper and hot sauce. Heat until chicken is warm.
Place in bowls and top with a teaspoon of pesto and grated parmesan cheese.