Kale and quinoa minestrone

When it's going to be like 2°F in a few hours, hot soup is all you really want to eat for dinner. Especially living in a freezing cold house. My family likes to keep our house at about as cold as the arctic where the polar bears, penguins, and elves live. I love it at night because I get super hot usually in the night, but during the day and evening when I'm awake, it can actually feel pretty painfully cold sometimes! 

Earlier today when I saw that the temperature was going to drop to the single digits, I was searching through all my saved bookmarks on my computer (which is like 5.86 million....99.9% of them having to do with food and/or recipes from my other fellow food bloggers), and I came across this kale and quinoa minestrone soup from Prevention RD, and knew this was the ONE! ...That sounds like I'm marrying this soup... I'm not don't worry. But still, it was the perfect comforting dinner sitting next to the fireplace on this chilly night.

Serves 8 (2 cups each)

Total time to prep and cook: About 1 hour

Ingredients:

  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 3 medium carrots, chopped or diced
  • 3 stalks celery, chopped
  • 2 cups frozen green beans (cut)
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • Riced Cauliflower (bought at Trader Joe's)
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 (32 oz) low-sodium vegetable broth
  • 1 (28 oz) can crushed tomatoes
  • 3 cups water
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 tsp dried rosemary, crushed
  • ¾ tsp dried thyme
  • 1½ tsp coconut sugar (or granulated sugar)
  • Ground black pepper, to taste
  • Sea salt, to taste
  • ¾ cup dry quinoa
  • 1 (15 oz) can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 (15 oz) can chick peas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 bunch dinosaur (lacinato) kale, thick ribs removed and leaves roughly chopped
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice
  • Parmesan cheese, grated

Directions:

  1. In a large stockpot, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Add diced onion, carrots and celery and sauté about 5 minutes, until softened. Add in green beans and peas and sauté 2-3 minutes.
  2. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, about one minute.
  3. Add in broth, crushed tomatoes, water, parsley, rosemary, thyme, coconut sugar, and season with salt and pepper to taste and bring mixture to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and allow soup to gently boil, uncovered for about 20 minutes.
  4. Add quinoa, stir, cover and cook 15 - 20 minutes longer.
  5. Add beans, kale, and lemon juice and cook, uncovered, until kale has wilted, about 5 minutes. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed. I added some shakes of salt to boost the flavor s bit. Serve soup hot and garnished with Parmesan cheese.

[Recipe slightly adapted from www.preventionrd.com]