Is it just me or did you think Spring was going to be warm and sunny this year too? I don’t know what’s going on with this crazy weather, but I don’t like it one bit (queue the temper tantrum). On a dreary day like this, the best thing to do is curl up on the couch with a big, fat bowl of soup. There are few things that warm the soul quite the way soup does. The brilliant thing about soup is that it is easy to make. So easy, that I make 10 servings at a time. I eat what I want immediately, put a serving or two in the refrigerator for the coming week, and pop the rest in the freezer. That way, on a dreary day, much like today, I don’t have to do much to enjoy a nice, hot, delicious bowl of my favorite soup.
Tuscan Vegetable Soup
32 ounces of low-sodium chicken stock
15-ounce can of low-sodium cannellini beans
15-ounce can of no salt added diced tomatoes
1 large onion
3 carrots, diced
3 stalks of celery, diced
1 small zucchini, diced
1 small yellow squash, diced
2 tablespoons of chopped fresh sage leaves
1 head of escarole, roughly chopped
½ tsp. salt
¼ tsp. fresh black pepper
Pinch of crushed red pepper flakes
1 tbsp. olive oil
Freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Heat the oil in a large soup pot over medium-high heat. Add the onions, carrots and celery and cook until the vegetables start to soften. This should take about 5-7 minutes. Then, add the zucchini, squash and sage. Season your vegetables with the salt, pepper and crushed red pepper flakes. Continue to let this cook for another 5-7 minutes. Then, add the chicken stock and diced tomatoes with the juice and bring to a boil. Drain and rinse the beans thoroughly and then add them to the soup. Now, you can add your escarole. Make sure it is washed thoroughly.* Let the escarole wilt; this will take about 3 minutes. You can serve it immediately with some freshly grated Parmesan cheese, or freeze it! If you are going to freeze it, I suggest pre-portioning it. That way, when you want a soup, you can simply grab one from the freezer!
*Escarole is really dirty; the leaves hold a lot of sand and dirt. To wash your escarole, fill a large bowl with cold water. Place the head of escarole into the water, upside-down. Shake it around and make sure the water gets in between the leaves. The sand and dirt will start to fall to the bottom of the bowl.