We've finally succumbed and turned the heating on this week, and needed something warming and wintry for supper to mark the occasion.
I've called this a hotpot rather than a soup because you can actually stand your spoon up in it. Nothing wrong with that in my book, but I would hate to offend any soup purists.
The star of the show here is some rather fabulous soup pasta 'Stellette' (like this one by De Cecco). These are tiny little star shapes, which take just minutes to cook and are very light, but turn this from a starter into a really hearty and filling main course.
Recipe: Borlotti Bean Minestrone Hotpot
- 1 onion finely chopped
- 1 clove garlic crushed
- 2 sticks celery finely chopped
- 2 carrots finely chopped
- 1 potato cut into 1cm dice
- 400 g tin borlotti beans drained and rinsed
- 400 g tin chopped tomatoes or passata
- 750 ml vegetable stock
- 100 g stellette soup pasta or any other small pasta shape would do
- In a large saucepan, gently fry the onion and garlic in olive oil until softened and translucent. Add the celery and carrot and cook for a further 5 minutes.
- Add the potatoes and borlotti beans, followed by the tomatoes or passata, and finally the vegetable stock. Season generously and simmer for at least 20 minutes until all the vegetables are cooked through. This is even better when it has had longer for the flavours to combine, so make it up to this stage in advance or even in a slow cooker.
- minutes before serving, add the stellette pasta and simmer until cooked through.
- Serve with a hunk of crusty sourdough.