This recipe for warming minestrone makes the most of spring vegetables and is perfect served with homemade bread as a light lunch or supper.
- 1tbsp olive oil
- 1 large onion, finely chopped
- 2 celery sticks, finely chopped
- 2 large garlic cloves, crushed
- 1 small red chilli, chopped
- 1.2 litres hot vegetable stock made with 2 very low salt stock cubes
- 125g spaghetti, broken into 3 (or use any short pasta)
- 200g new potatoes, cut into chunks
- 100g asparagus tips
- 75g each frozen or fresh peas and broad beans
- 125g green beans, sliced
- 2tbsp each chopped fresh mint and flatleaf parsley
- 2tbsp fresh vegetarian pesto and 20g freshly grated vegetarian parmesan-style cheese, to serve
- Heat the oil in a large non-stick saucepan, then add the onion and celery and soften over a low heat for 5 min. Add the garlic and chilli and cook for a further 2 min.
- Pour in the vegetable stock and bring to the boil, then add the spaghetti and potatoes. Simmer for 10 min or until tender. Add the remaining vegetables and cook for 3 min or until tender.
- Add the mint and parsley, then divide the soup among 4 bowls. Top each with a spoonful of fresh pesto and grated cheese to serve.