Minestrone Grande

This big soup is even better with fresh kale from the garden.

September 12, 2011

In English, the Italian word minestrone translates as "big soup." This minestrone, with the addition of hunks of smoky ham, is a big, big soup that's grand enough for a meal.

Serves: 6
Prep:  12min
Cook: 1hr
Total: 1hr 12min

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cups chopped onion
  • 2 cups chopped celery
  • 2 cups carrots, cut in rounds
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon dried italian seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon red-pepper flakes
  • 2 cans (15 ounces each) cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 pound thick boneless ham steak, cut into 1/2" cubes
  • 1 can (15 ounces) diced Italian-seasoned tomatoes
  • 10 cups chicken broth
  • 4 cups chopped kale
  • 3 cups cooked orzo

1. In a large pot set over high heat, combine the oil, onion, celery, carrots, garlic, Italian seasoning, salt, and red-pepper flakes. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes. Add the beans, ham, tomatoes (with juice), and broth. Bring almost to a boil. Reduce the heat to low. Cover partially and simmer for 45 minutes, or until the carrots are softened. Add the kale. Cover partially and simmer for 15 minutes, or until the kale is tender.

2. Ladle 7 cups into a shallow container. Let stand to cool completely. Transfer to an airtight container. Refrigerate for up to 3 days for use at another time or for a different recipe.

3. Meanwhile, stir the orzo into the minestrone in the pot.

Nutritional Facts per serving
Calories     789.1 cal
Fat     12.7 g
Saturated fat     2.3 g
Cholesterol     34 mg
Sodium     3369.2 mg
Carbohydrates     125.8 g
Total sugars     13.7 g
Dietary fiber     13.1 g
Protein     40.7 g



Courtesy of the Rodale Healthy Recipe Finder.