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Minestrone Soup

Ingredients:

4 cups broth
1 can petit diced tomatoes with juice (or 3 large tomatoes, peeled and diced, plus 1/2 cup more broth)
1 can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
2 carrots, chopped
1 small onion, diced
1 cup pasta (ditalini, elbows, or small shells work best)
4 cloves garlic, minced
Small piece parmesan rind or 1/4 cup grated parmesan
2 TBSP Italian herb blend*
1 bay leaf
pinch chili powder
salt & pepper
1 TBSP olive oil

For garnish: grated parmesan, chopped fresh parsley, chopped fresh basil

Directions:

1. In a stock pot sweat onion, carrot, and garlic in olive oil for 2-3 minutes.
2. Add all other ingredients EXCEPT pasta.
3. Bring to a simmer and simmer 30 minutes.
4. Add pasta and continue to simmer until pasta is tender, 8-10 minutes.
5. Remove bay leaf and parmesan rind if it didn't dissolve.
6. Garnish each bowl and serve with bread.

*if you want to use fresh herbs, chop a handful each of basil and parsley, and add a sprig of thyme or rosemary.