Classic vegetable soup recipe

Sometimes this is a necessity, because winter brings with it a lot of rich and high-calorie foods, but really minestrone It is a healthy and nutritious food typical of the winter months. Unfortunately, a preparation that requires a little effort in the kitchen, especially for those who do not like to spend time on it. But it is not very difficult to do. With some basic tricks – and the occasional turn of a ladle – it’s possible to get better minestrone, where the individual flavors of the ingredients stand out.

Carrots, celery, beets, potatoes, kale, peas, turnips and onions are the heroes of the cold months and are the main ingredients of the soup. Doses (and any additions, such as beans or chestnuts) can be varied according to your taste, but it is recommended to put in the same amount by weight of each vegetable. There is no need to be overly careful, just seeing is enough to reveal that we are exaggerating with a particular vegetable, risking it overshadowing the taste of others. Avoid aromatic herbs, as they give a very bitter taste.

Even before cutting them, vegetables should be well washed and cleaned. Individual items should be cut evenly to make them look and feel nicer to the touch, which won’t happen with pieces of different sizes. It is also important not to leave too large pieces, for example in the case of potatoes. Peels, stems, leaves, and any other scraps, if properly cleaned, can be set aside and used to make stock, stored in the freezer just in case (even in small ice cubes, used to flavor dishes).

Use a large pot and fill it three-quarters full with water. Soak vegetables while the liquid is still cold to preserve their appearance. The cooking time may vary, but it is recommended to keep it for an hour and a half, check that it has not reduced too much, keep the heat low and cover it with a lid. No nuts or even oil during cooking: add nothing but a handful of salt.

Minestrone should be seasoned after serving, so that everyone can dose the oil and pepper as desired. The combinations don’t end there: toasted black bread, whole or cubed, is an excellent ally to bring out the winter flavor of this preparation. Other toppings might be a hint of lard or pesto alla genovese in fairly thick slices.

It is true that we should get used to eating all the minestrone, not only to enjoy its colors and texture, but also not to destroy all the fiber that is important in our diet. However, pureed minestrone is a viable alternative for those who cannot tolerate whole vegetables, especially when paired with scrambled eggs and crispy bacon.

With a pressure cooker, you can not only reduce cooking time with economy that never hurts, but it is also a method that makes food tastier because it preserves all its properties. To prepare minestrone in a pressure cooker, peel all the vegetables, put them in a pot and pour about 1 liter of water (or enough water to completely cover the vegetables), add salt, herbs, a little extra virgin olive oil and cover with a lid. Make sure the valve handle is lowered (closed) and start cooking while maintaining high flame. As soon as you hear the sound from the valve, reduce the heat to low and switch off after 10/12 minutes. Let the pot cool for about 5 minutes, lift the valve to let the steam out, and serve.

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