Minestrone soup with basil pesto Serves 4
1 tblsp olive oil
1 brown onion, finely chopped
1 carrot, finely chopped
1 celery stalk, finely chopped
4 slices pancetta/bacon, chopped
4 cups (1 litre) chicken stock
400g can chopped tomatoes
1 zucchini trimmed, finely chopped
½ cup (60g) small penne pasta
½ cup frozen peas
400g can borlotti beans, rinsed, drained
1 cup basil leaves
¼ cup toasted pinenuts
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
40mL olive oil
25 parmesan, crumbled or grated
- Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion, carrot, celery & pancetta & cook, stirring for 5 minutes or until onion softens. Add the stock, tomato and zucchini and bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to low and cook, stirring occasionally, for 20 minutes or until soup thickens slightly. Add the pasta and cook for 10 minutes or until tender.
- Add the peas and borlotti beans and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Meanwhile, place all pesto ingredients in a food processor to combine. Season with salt and pepper and serve the soup with a dollop of pesto.
Beef Pho (Vietnamese Beef Noodle Soup) Serves 4
1.5L beef stock
1 cinnamon stick
2 star anise
¼ cup lime juice
2 tblsp fish sauce
375g packet rice noodles
600g beef fillet, excess fat trimmed
200g bean sprouts
4 green onions, ends trimmed, thinly sliced on the diagonal
4 cups thin julienne vegetables e.g. carrot, capsicum, snow peas etc
2-4 small red chillies, thinly sliced (OPTIONAL)
- 1 cup Thai basil leaves (or basil leaves) Combine stock, cinnamon and star anise in a medum saucepan over high heat. Bring to the boil. Reduce heat to medium & simmer for 5 mins or until aromatic. Stir in lime juice & fish sauce.
- Cook rice noodles in a large pan of boiling water until just tender. Drain well.
- Slice beef into very thin slices. Heat a BBQ or chargrill pan on high. Cook beef for 1 min per side (it is not meant to be cooked all the way through!).
- Blanch vegetables in hot water for 1-2 minutes. Refresh in cold water.
- Divide noodles among serving bowls. Top with vegetables, chilli, basil & beef. Pour over hot stock and serve with extra lime, chilli & fish sauce.
NOTE: The hot stock will continue to cook the vegetables while eating.