Provencal Vegetable Soup

Serving Size: 6

Ingredients

1/3 pound leeks – thinly sliced
1/3 pound celery – cut into 1/2″ pieces
1/3 pound carrots – cut into 1/2″ pieces
2 cloves garlic – finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon thyme
3 1/4 tablespoons olive oil
1/3 pound red potatoes – cut into 1/2″ pieces
1/3 pound chard – well washed, stems cut into 1/2″ pieces, leaves coarsely chopped
5 cups vegetable stock (or water)
1/3 cup navy beans – soaked overnight and cooked
1/3 pound zucchini – cut into 1/2″ pieces
1/3 pound green beans – cut into 1″ pieces
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup fresh basil
1/3 cup fresh parsley
Romano cheese – grated

Tomatoes (if in season) also make a nice addition to this soup, as does just about any vegetable straight from the garden or farmer’s market.

Preparation

1. In a large soup pot, saute leeks, celery, carrots, garlic and thyme in 2 tablespoons olive oil until soft.

2. Add potatoes and chard stems and saute for 5-10 minutes, until they start to soften.
3. Add stock, green beans, chard leaves, navy beans and zucchini. Bring to a boil, then turn down to simmer and cook until vegetables are tender.
4. Taste and season with salt and pepper.
5. In a food processor, combine basil, parsley and remaining olive oil until a paste is formed. Add this to the soup shortly before serving and stir well.
6. Serve with grated romano cheese on the side.

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