I used to have a lovely garden at my house in the USA. I grew basil, tomatoes, cucumbers and peppers. I was just getting my green thumb when we picked up our family and moved to London. I didn’t have a garden there but my back fence was filled with grape leaf vines and there was a fig tree. The fig tree was cool except it was in London where the weather never allowed the tree to produce edible figs.
Now I’m in Shanghai and my dinky back patio is not hospitable to gardening. Luckily there’s a vegetable market across the street and my weekly delivery of Goma Greens that ensures I have plenty of seasonal vegetables without getting dirt under my nails.
Between my Goma Greens delivery Wednesday and the vegetables I had more than enough veggies in my refrigerator to make this very delicious Spring Vegetable Soup with Pesto. I used lots of zucchinis, carrots and bell peppers as usual, but what I’ve never put in salad before was lettuce!
Who would have thought this salad vegetable could add such a nice taste.
But I have to say that my favourite part of the soup? The dollop of pesto. The soup itself isn’t bursting with any distinct flavour other than vegetables, but when you swirl in that pesto…
Game changer!! This soup went from a regular old vegetable soup to a bowl of delicious Italian goodness!
The recipe makes a lot of soup. A lot. You can easily half the recipe if you’d like or be prepared to enjoy bowls and bowls of healthy soup for dinner all week.
This delicious vegetarian soup is so easy to make and full of seasonal vegetables. The dollop of pesto at the end really gives the soup a distinct flavour
- 2 tablespoons Olive Oil
- 2 Garlic Cloves, sliced thin
- 2 Carrots, sliced thin
- 2 Zucchinis, sliced thin
- 1 Red Onion, diced
- 1 Red Bell Pepper, diced
- 1 Yellow Bello Pepper, diced
- 1 large Tomato, diced
- 8 cups Vegetable Broth
- 1/2 Chinese Cabbage, shredded
- 1/2 Soft Lettuce, shredded (I used Bibb Lettuce)
- Handful Kale, chopped
- 1/2 pound Green Peas
- 1 small bunch Parsley, chopped
- 1 small bunch Basil, chopped
- 4 ounces small pasta noodle
- Salt and Pepper to taste
- Parmesan Cheese, to serve
- 1 small bunch Basil Leaves, stems removed
- 1/4 cup Pine Nuts
- 1/4 cup Parmesan Cheese
- Salt and Pepper
- Olive Oil
- Heat olive oil in a large stock pot.
- Saute red onions until soft. Add garlic, carrots and zucchini. Stir well and allow to soften but not cook all the way through.
- Add both bell peppers, tomatoes and Chinese cabbage. Saute the vegetable mix for for 3-4 minutes.
- Pour in the vegetable stock. Bring to boil over high heat, add peas and noodles, then reduce to medium-low and let simmer for about 20 minutes.
- Season with salt and pepper.
- After 20 minutes, with heat off, stir in basil, kale, parsley and lettuce.
- Serve with a dollop of pesto and a generous sprinkling of Parmesan cheese.
- With food processor on, slowly drizzle in enough olive oil to bind the sauce and get an oozy consistency.
- Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.