This recipe is my whatever-I-had-in-the-house version of a minestrone soup. I am using chick peas which are starchy so I did not include pasta, but feel free to add macaroni. If you add pasta, you will need to add more water and adjust the seasoning.
For a twist, I am included Miso which is a fermented soybean pasted use in sauce and soups and provides a salty, complex flavor. Miso and tomato pair perfectly. I am using a three year old barely miso, but you can use what ever miso you prefer. Miso can be found in most coops.
This is a completely vegan meal, which is a shot out to http://blissfulbellas.wordpress.com who featured their vegan Thanksgiving meal on their blog.
Chic Pea Minestrone: Serves 6
2 can of chick peas
1 28 ounce can of dice tomatoes (I like fire roasted)
1 quart of water or veggie stock
2 onions diced
3 cloves of garlic minced
2 medium sweet potatoes Peel and small dice or 1-2 cup of dice winter squash
2 carrot peeled diced
2 ribs of celery diced
2 bay leafs
1-2 tablespoons of rice vinegar or some lemon juice
1-2 tablespoon miso (or to taste)
pinch of cayenne pepper or hot sauce to taste (options)
1/2 teaspoon cumin powder
salt and pepper
Italian Parsley for garnish.
Olive oil drizzled on top of soup
In a large pot, heat 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil. Saute the onion for five minutes. Add the garlic and cook for another minute. Add the celery, carrots and sweet potato. Cook for five more minute. Add the canned tomatoes and the tomato water, chick peas and one quart of water (or stock). Add the bay leaf and bring the soup to a boil, then simmer. When the sweet potatoes are done, turn off the heat.
Place the miso in a small bowl with some of the soup liquid and mash to a thin smooth paste then stir into the soup. Add salt, pepper, vinegar (or lemon) and hot sauce to taste.
Serve with crusty Italian bread and garnish soup with drops of olive oil, and a few sprigs of Italian parsley.