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Winter Vegetable Minestrone

Yield Makes 6 to 8 servings
"Minestrone is comfort food for our Italian family. It's very warming—I literally sweat when I eat it," says Lynn Bagley, founder of the Marin County Farmers Market Association in San Rafael, California.

Ingredients

  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, pressed or minced
  • 6 cups vegetable or chicken broth
  • 1 dried bay leaf
  • 1/2 pound banana squash
  • 3/4 pound Swiss chard
  • 1 can (14 1/2 oz.) diced tomatoes with Italian seasonings
  • 2 cans (15 oz. each) cannellini (white beans), rinsed and drained
  • Salt and pepper
  • Grated parmesan cheese

Nutrition Information

  • calories 140
  • caloriesfromfat 10 %
  • protein 7.8 g
  • fat 1.6 g
  • satfat 0.1 g
  • carbohydrate 24 g
  • fiber 6 g
  • sodium 352 mg
  • cholesterol 0.0 mg

How to Make It

  1. In a 5- to 6-quart pan, combine oil, onion, and garlic. Stir over high heat until onion begins to brown, about 5 minutes.

  2. Add broth and bay leaf. Bring to a boil over high heat.

  3. Cut off and discard peel from squash; cut squash into 1/2-inch cubes and add to pan. Cover and simmer over medium heat until squash is tender when pierced, about 6 minutes.

  4. Meanwhile, trim off discolored ends of Swiss chard stems. Rinse chard, shake off moisture, stack, and cut in half lengthwise; then cut crosswise into 1/4-inch-wide strips.

  5. Add Swiss chard, tomatoes, and beans to squash mixture. Bring to a boil over high heat, stirring often, and boil until chard stems are tender when pierced, 3 to 4 minutes. Ladle into soup bowls.

  6. Season minestrone with salt, pepper, and cheese to taste.