This weekend, I had the most “Falliest” of weekends. Saturday, I went out to the bar with my siblings, and some friends---I was good and only had one drink! Yes—I did say I was going to stay away from alcohol since it’s unneeded calories—but I don’t think one was going to hurt! Plus I made up for it by saving the calories for the beer, so it wasn’t extra or added on. Anyway, I had what was called an “Angry Pumpkin”, my first pumpkin beer of the season. 3 words sums up this bad boy: Pumpkin beer + Fireball. ENOUGH SAID! My new favorite fall time drink! The rim was dipped in cinnamon, the shot of fireball in it gave it that spicy, cinnamon taste—All in all it was heavenly goodness, probably the best pumpkin beer I have ever had! Sunday was a relaxing day, something I very much needed! I painted my first pumpkin of the year. I haven’t had time to go out East on Long Island yet to pick my own pumpkin, so I decided to get mine while I was shopping at Shop Rite. 2 for $5.00, who can pass that up!? ((For all you non New Yorkers, going out East Long Island is great for this time of year. They have pie stands, farms where you can pick your own pumpkins, fruits and vegetables, animals farms, roasted corn stands, wineries, and other great, fun activities—I’ll probably make the half hour trip out their next weekend)). So, I bought that little pumpkin, brought it home, painted it, and then began cooking.
I decided that since it was a cold, windy day, I was in the mood for soup. But, I was in the mood to make it from scratch, not a Progresso or Campbell’s canned soup. So I looked up recipes and saw one for Minestrone, and thought that, yeah—it was a minestrone type of day for me. I was home alone, so it was very peaceful…listening to music, singing at the top of my lungs, while chopping and dicing and stirring and simmering. It was complete bliss. The homemade soup came out so tasty, so healthy, and so full of minerals, leaving me wanting more. Luckily, I made A LOT so I could freeze it and save it for another night’s dinner, and of course for whomever in the house wanted to taste my delicious masterpiece. Mwahahha!
Serves: 8, 1/12 cups
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 cup minced yellow onion (about 1 small onion)
- ½ cup chopped zucchini (3/4 of 1 zucchini)
- ¼ cup minced celery (I used 2 stalks
- ½ cup diced carrots
- 4 teaspoons minced garlic (I used 3 cloves)
- 4 cups vegetable broth
- 19oz can Red Kidney beans
- 19oz can White Cappelini beans
- 1 (14oz) can of diced tomatoes
- ½ cup frozen cut Italian green beans
- 2 tablespoons parsley
- 1 1/2 tablespoon Oregano (I used 3 shakes of the oregano.—I think any more would be too much)
- ¼ teaspoon thyme
- ½ teaspoon dried basil
- 3 cups hot water
- 4 cups fresh raw spinach
- ½ cup small shell pasta
- Heat three tablespoons of olive oil in large pot over medium heat
- Sautee onions, celery, garlic, green beans, and zucchini in the oil for 5 minutes or until onions turn translucent
- Add vegetable broth, water, drained tomatoes, carrots, beans and spices.
- Bring soup to a boil, then reduce heat and allow to simmer for 20 minutes (or longer)
- Add spinach, and pasta and cook for additional 20 minutes.
- I let the soup simmer all day (2-3 hours)
- I added the spinach about 20 minutes before serving
- If you’re freezing/saving for another day DO NOT add the pasta. I boiled enough pasta for my serving and added it to my personal bowl of soup. I froze the soup without the pasta in it, and will cook it separately, next time I unfreeze the soup. This is because, the broth will get thick, allowing the pasta to absorb the beautiful broth.
And since I barely ate anything that day, I allowed myself to have a piece of bread and butter. Soup, bread and butter the most perfect combination!
Oh, and after that delicious meal, I relaxed and watched a movie! What more can a perfect Sunday consist of!?
Great movie by the way, I highly recommend watching it (have a box of tissues by your side though) I read the book and the two are very much alike.