Quinoa Minestrone

Quinoa Minestrone

Quinoa Minestrone

I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving! I was lucky enough to spend mine with my wonderful family in Canada—11 people, 5 dogs, and 3 inches of snow. I’ve never been much of a turkey gal, but the tried-and-true veggie sides are right up my alley. While I bide my time between leftovers and board games, I thought I’d post this recipe from earlier week (#throwbacksunday anyone?). In advance of my family’s road trip up north, I tried to use up all fresh produce in our fridge. The result was this soup, brimming with veggies and quinoa for substance. By nature, minestrone is as versatile as it is delicious, so feel free to substitute or add any soup-friendly extras you have hanging around your fridge.

Quinoa Minestrone
Author: Claire Crane
Ingredients
  • ½ cup quinoa, cooked
  • 4 stalks of kale, deribbed and sliced into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 28 oz. can whole tomatoes
  • 4 carrots, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 leek, sliced into ½ inch thick rings
  • 1 16 oz. can cannellini beans
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • ½ teaspoon dried rosemary
  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano
  • ½ dried basil
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely diced
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
Instructions
  1. Prepare the quinoa as according to the package and set aside
  2. If making your own vegetable broth (see my quick recipe here), prepare 4 cups worth and set aside
  3. Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large pot, and add the garlic, leeks, and carrots. Cook, stirring occasionally, over medium heat until the leeks are translucent and the carrots slightly browned
  4. Add the rosemary, oregano, and basil, with heavy pinches of salt and pepper
  5. Stir and cook for one minute more before adding the tomatoes
  6. Break up the tomatoes with your spoon
  7. Bring the tomato juice to a light boil, and add the vegetable broth
  8. Bring the broth to a boil, then add the kale, remaining olive oil, vinegar, and cannellini beans
  9. Cover and cook the soup for 5 minutes over low heat before adding the quinoa
  10. Cook for 4 minutes more, and serve hot

Notes:

  • Adding the quinoa at the end ensures that the quinoa retains some of its texture and doesn’t absorb all of the liquid (I’ve made that mistake—the result was more of quinoa with soup rather than a soup with quinoa)
  • Make sure the kale is cut into small pieces! Bigger leaves are a bit burdensome and harder to chew

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