Minestrone by Necessity

All year, my husband has been sick in one form or another.  First with chemotherapy, then the reaction to the chemo, and now the recovering from the solid destruction the treatment has taken on his stomach and intestines.  Less than ideal. 

However, 2 things have come out of it.  I have become a walking expert on cancer related medications, and foods to prepare.  I have an astounding array (okay, 3) books on cooking for cancer, or at least, cooking to avoid cancer and a growing notebook of ideas, guidance and foods that he likes, combined with anti-carcinogenic properties.  (I told you I was getting good with the terminology).

But now he is on the mend, it is time for a new regime.  He has never been a soup fan, sadly, as I ADORE the stuff.  However, as he has been recovering, his soups have been becoming more solid, and more interesting. 

Did I mention he tends to hate food the second time around?  Again, different from me.  I LOVE leftovers.  I know where I stand with leftovers.  I can see that there are so many meals, or parts of a meal remaining.  So I had been using those convenient cans-of-soup-for-one for him.  Until I ran out!  So disorganized in the chaos.

And now to the point of this entry, I needed a filling soup, high in cancer fighting ingredients, and fast.  Almost-instant minestrone came as a tasty flash.

The Almost-Instant recipe

From the pantry:
– 5 bean mix (canned)
– Spiral pasta
– Tomato pasta sauce with garlic

From the garden
– Zucchini
– Fresh basil
– Leek
– Onion

From the freezer/fridge
– Vegetable broth
– Frozen mixed vegies

Into a medium saucepan on a low heat, throw 1/2 cup of vegetable broth.  I had this leftover from a soup earlier in the week.  Also add a handful of pasta (I keep an airtight container of pasta remnants, you know, those last bits that don’t get cooked).

Rinse about 3 tablespoon fulls of the bean mix under cold water.  The brine is just awful in soup.  Throw the beans into the soup.

Add a handful of frozen mixed vegetables.  This will drop the temperature, but shouldn’t stop the boiling at this point.

Cut 2 slices of onion and 4 slices of leek into small pieces, and dice the small zucchini.  Throw this in with the soup.

Add 1/2 cup of pasta sauce and chopped basil.  Season with salt and pepper.  Allow soup to boil until the pasta is cooked. 

Spoon half the saucepans worth into a bowl.  Add boiling water and stir to a pleasing consistency.  Serve.

The remaining bit can be refrigerated or frozen for use later on. 

I meant to photograph the soup, but both meals were eaten so quickly.  However, I still have leftovers to make more from scratch if need be.


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