Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Genoa use for basil?

In spite of Neal's backyard bonfire attempt, our herbs have been growing like crazy.  So much that what flowers actually survived the flames were eventually killed anyway due to crowding out from the herbs.  I'm sure if I would have been on the ball that wouldn't have happened but at least I can eat the herbs right?  Well...

This is roughly about a third of what I've harvested of the basil alone this year.  Luckily pesto freezes well right?  What does one do with excess pesto?  Make Genoese Minestrone... I know I know, soup in the summer?  It was a good lazy day meal.  I've had a lot of Genoese food this past month... and this month we will have loads of Chinese food!  Don't forget to do the Chinese Food Olympic Event!

Genoese Minestrone
modified from Soup by Debra Mayhew
serves 4 to 6

3 Tb olive oil
1 onion, minced
2 celery stalks, minced
1 large carrot, minced
5 ounces thin green beans, cut into 2-inch pieces
1 zucchini, finely sliced
1 potato, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1/4 Savoy cabbage, shredded or 1 cup shredded kale
7-ounce can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
2Italian plum tomatoes, chopped
1 1/4 quarts vegetable stock
3 1/2 ounces spaghetti or vermicelli
salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the pesto
about 20 fresh basil leaves
1 garlic clove
2 tsp pine nuts
2 Tb freshly grated Parmesan cheese
2 Tb olive oil

1) Heat the oil in a large saucepan.  Add the onion, celery, and carrot and cook over low heat, stirring frequently, for 5 to 7 minutes.

2) Stir in the green beans, zucchini, potato, and cabbage and stir-fry over medium heat for about 3 minutes.  Add the cannellini beans, and plum tomatoes and stir-fry for 2 to 3 minutes longer.

3) Pour in the stock with salt and pepper to tste and bring to a boil.  Sitr well, cover, lower the heat and simmer for 40 minutes, stirring occasionally.

4) Meanwhile, process all the pesto ingredients in a food processor until the mixture forms a smooth sauce, adding 1 to 3 tablespoons water through the feeder tube if the sauce seems too thick.

5) Break the pasta into small pieces and add it to the soup.  Simmer, stirring frequently, for 5 minutes.  Stir in the pesto sauce and simmer for 2 to 3 minutes longer, or until the pasta is al dente.  Check the seasoning and serve hot, in warm soup bowls.  Serve with toasted bread.
* I did this in a crockpot and it worked great too


  1. Yeah, I was just perusing wikipedia--
    it seems to me that maybe my little fire was just what these herbs needed.

  2. wow!! Good thing fresh herbs taste so good in just about everything.

    I love your new layout. Everything you do is so artistic and impressive!

  3. Thanks for the basil recipe. I have Basil in my garden too and it is great!


Thanks for your comment, pop in again soon!