Gloves? Check. Hat? Check. Scarf that doubles as a blanket? Check. You’ve got your winter armor down pat, but truthfully, nothing warms you up quite like a piping-hot bowl of soup. This recipe for kale minestrone has all the good stuff—vegetables, beans, pasta and cheese. For a bit of freshness, we add a spoonful of pesto (and more cheese) to each bowl. Serve the soup with some crusty bread and let the thawing begin.
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 sweet onion, diced
2 carrots, peeled and diced
3 celery stalks, peeled and diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
One 28-ounce can diced tomatoes
One 15-ounce can crushed tomatoes
4 cups chicken or vegetable broth
1 bay leaf
2 sprigs oregano
2 sprigs thyme
2 sprigs rosemary
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1¼ cups small dried pasta (such as orecchiette, elbows or mini farfalle)
1 bunch kale, roughly torn
One 15-ounce can kidney beans
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided
1 cup pesto, for garnish
1. In a large pot, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the onion, carrots and celery, and sauté until tender, 5 to 6 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, 1 minute more.
2. Add the tomatoes and broth, and bring the mixture to a simmer. Reduce the heat to low and add the bay leaf, oregano, thyme and rosemary. Simmer until the soup is flavorful, 20 to 30 minutes.
3. Season the soup with salt and pepper. Bring the soup back to a simmer over medium heat and add the pasta. Cook according to package instructions, 6 to 8 minutes.
4. Stir in the kale, beans and ½ cup Parmesan.
5. To serve, ladle the soup into bowls and top each portion with a heaping tablespoon of pesto and a few teaspoons of Parmesan. The soup will keep, refrigerated in an airtight container, for up to five days. (You may need to thin it out with water when you reheat it, as the pasta can absorb some of the moisture as it sits.)