Lately, life has been hectic around our household. While I usually look forward to getting home, pouring a glass of wine and trying some new recipe, lately just getting dinner over with is all I can think of. That’s when I turn to this soup. It’s easy…it’s full of flavor…it’s healthy..and most of all, IT’S QUICK! My grocery store not only carries the whole roasted chicken, but also a roasted turkey breast, and that’s what I like to use in this soup. There are also several items that I always have on hand in my pantry so that at any given moment, I can throw together a great pot of soup: onions, garlic, chicken broth, canned tomatoes, orzo pasta (or any small shaped pasta) and canned cannellini beans. I also like to keep small bags of frozen veggies in my freezer. For this soup, I like to add green beans, but you could also add green peas, or use your imagination and add whatever veggies you happen to like and have on hand. If you want to take this soup to the next level, make the Pistou and put just a small spoonful in the middle of each bowl of soup. Pistou is the French version of pesto, but made without nuts. It will add a delicious punch of flavor to this soup! Served with a hunk of good bread and a nice glass of wine, who’s to say this isn’t a gourmet meal? Bon Appetit!
- 1 large onion, chopped (3/4 cup)
- 6 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 (32 oz) cartons chicken broth
- 2 tablespoons “Better than Bouillon“ (chicken flavor)
- 1 medium can tomatoes, chopped with juice
- 1 can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 1/2 teaspoons dried thyme, crushed
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper (or to taste)
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 cups chopped turkey (can also use roasted chicken)
- 2 medium zucchini, chopped (2 1/2 cups)
- 1 (10 oz) package frozen green beans
- 1/2 cup dried orzo pasta
In a 4-quart Dutch oven or soup pot, cook and stir onion over medium heat about 4 minutes or until onion is translucent. Add garlic, stir and cook about a minute more. Add broth, Better than Bouillon, tomatoes, cannellini beans, thyme, salt, red pepper and bay leaves. BTB (bring to boil), RTS (reduce to simmer), cover and cook 30 minutes.
Stir in turkey, zucchini, green beans and orzo pasta. Cover and simmer about 10 minutes more or until pasta is tender. Remove bay leaves.
Meanwhile, prepare Pistou. To serve, ladle soup into bowls. Top with a dollop of Pistou and, if desired, shredded Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese.
In food processor or blender, combine 2 cups firmly packed fresh basil leaves, 2 T Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, 2 T olive oil, and 6 cloves of garlic, halved. Cover and process or blend until finely chopped. Add enough additional olive oil 1-2T to thin mixture to desired consistency.