No matter the season or your climate, soup is comfort food. As human beings surrounded by a web of adversity and financial stress, we all need comfort food when things get tough. Depression can creep in to one degree or another no matter what is going on in our lives. The best we can do is take care of ourselves---body, mind and spirit---and nutrition, in every regard, is paramount. That means the more fresh vegetables and whole foods we eat, the better we can function, especially in the colder months when we naturally seek insulation. What better way to insulate from the inside out than by eating a warm bowl of vitamin-packed yet delicious soup?
SOURCE: The Little Paris Kitchen
For a classic pistou:
- 1 bunch of basil (let sit)
- 3 cloves of garlic
- 3-4 T good extra virgin olive oil
- 2 onions, diced
- 4 cloves of garlic, crushed to a paste
- 1 sprig of thyme
- 2 bay leaves
- 4 T tomato paste
- 2 carrots, diced
- 2 zucchini, diced
- 7 oz. green beans, quartered
- 14-oz can white beans (e.g., haricots blancs, cannellini) Drained and rinsed
- 2 qt. boiling water
- 1 T salt (to taste)
- A pinch of sugar
- Pepper (to taste)
- 2/3 cup dried pasta (a small variety like orzo)
- 1 ¼ fresh or frozen peas
- To make a pistou, simply pound the ingredients to a smooth paste (or whizz in blender).
- Heat the olive oil in a large pot.
- Add the onions and garlic and cook gently, stirring occasionally, until soft and translucent.
- Add the thyme, bay leaves, tomato paste, carrots, and zucchini, then cook for 15 – 20 minutes or until the vegetables are al dente (tender but still a little crunchy).
- Add the green and white beans with the boiling water and bring to a boil, then add the pasta and peas.
- Cook for 10 minutes or until the pasta is al dente.
- Remove the sprig of thyme and the bay leaves, and then add the salt and sugar and season with pepper.
- Serve immediately, with a dollop of the pistou.