Photo by Laura Chase de Formigny and food styling by Lisa Cherkasky; for The Washington Post
This soup has all the familiar comfort of a classic minestrone, but with the unexpected addition of fresh tortellini instead of the typical beans and elbow macaroni. Packed with vegetables and made hearty with the cheese-stuffed pasta, it’s a nourishing bowl with a fresh, fun appeal. Use vegetable broth to make it vegetarian.
Storage Notes: The soup can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 3 days.
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium onion (about 6 ounces), diced
2 stalks celery, diced
1 medium carrot, diced
1 medium zucchini (about 8 ounces), cut into 1/2-inch pieces
2 cloves garlic, minced
3/4 teaspoon dried basil
3/4 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, or more to taste
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
One (14-ounce) can no-salt-added petite diced tomatoes, with juices
4 cups low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
2 cups water
One (9-ounce) package fresh store-bought cheese tortellini
3 cups (2 ounces) lightly packed baby spinach, coarsely chopped
1/3 cup (1 ounce) grated Parmesan cheese
In a large pot over medium heat, heat the oil until shimmering. Add the onion, celery and carrot and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened but not browned, about 5 minutes. Add the zucchini, garlic, basil, oregano, salt and pepper and cook for 1 minute more.
Add the tomatoes, the broth and 2 cups water and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium-low, cover and simmer until the vegetables are tender, 10 to 15 minutes.
Add the tortellini, return the broth to a boil, then cook, uncovered, 1 minute less than the directions on the package indicate; the tortellini should rise and float. Stir in the spinach and cook until just wilted, 1 minute more. Taste, and season to taste with more salt, if desired.
Ladle into 6 bowls, sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and serve hot.
Makes 6 servings
Per serving: Calories 226; Total Fat 8g; (Sat Fat 3g); Protein 13g; Carb 32g; Fiber 4g; Cholesterol 22mg; Sodium 512mg; Total Sugar 4g