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Minestrone – Jamie Oliver Keep Cooking and Carry On


Everyone is cooking up a storm as we spend a lot of time at home in isolation. Jamie Oliver is doing his bit with his fabulous series Keep Cooking and Carry On. 

I recently saw Jamie cook Minestrone from the series on an Instagram video, and “instantly” had to cook some too. The great thing about this recipe is that Jamie says use whatever is in your cupboard or fridge – don’t be afraid to chop and change ingredients!

So here’s Jamie’s recipe with my changes in italics. The link to Jamie’s original recipe is here.

Ingredients

4 rashers of higher-welfare smoked streaky bacon, optional

olive oil

1 clove of garlic

2 small onions

2 fresh bay leaves

2 carrots

2 sticks of celery

2 large handfuls of seasonal greens, such as savoy cabbage, curly kale, chard I used white cabbage and Swiss chard

1 vegetable stock cube1

1 x 400g tin of quality plum tomatoes

2 x 400g tins of beans, such as cannellini, butter, or mixed 
I used cannellini  and black eyed beans

100g dried pasta I used pappardelle and tricolour pasta

Parmesan cheese , to serve

extra virgin olive oil

Method

Put a large shallow casserole pan on a medium-high heat.

Finely slice the bacon, if using, and sprinkle into the pan with 1 tablespoon of olive oil, stirring occasionally while you prep your veg.

Peel and finely chop the garlic and onion, adding the garlic to the pan with the bay leaves as soon as the bacon turns golden, followed by the onions.

Trim and chop the carrots and celery into rough 1cm dice, adding to the pan as you go. Remove and finely chop any tough stalks from your greens and add to the pan. Cook for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring regularly, or until softened and caramelised.

Crumble in the stock cube, pour in the tinned tomatoes, breaking them up with your spoon, then add 1 tin’s worth of water.

Pour in the beans, juice and all, then add a pinch of sea salt and black pepper.

Shred your greens and sprinkle into the pan, top up with 600ml of boiling kettle water, then add the pasta. Cover and leave to simmer for 10 to 15 minutes, or until the pasta is just cooked and the soup has thickened to your liking.

Season the soup to your liking. Jamie serves with a granting of Parmesan cheese, a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and basil leaves and sometimes a dollop of pesto.  I just went for the basil – that was all it needed for me.

A note: I love this soup because it’s so thick! You can vary the consistency by cooking a little less to retain more liquids, or, once cooked, thinning with a little water.

The soup, if it’s really thick could be served on toast or bread. I would definitely recommend sprinkling with Parmesan or a cheddar and putting under the griller for a substantial snack!


Jamie Oliver’s Roast Tomato and Bread Soup

337667C0-58B4-4C7C-B539-B2C5C77552F5

A59915C4-B72B-4107-9399-0B785DC7E073I found this great Jamie Oliver recipe online when I was looking for soup inspiration. The roast tomatoes appealed to me – roasting vegetables seems to intensify the flavours. And the addition of ciabatta bread to thicken the soup is a nice rustic touch.

Ingredients

2 kg ripe tomatoes
½ a bulb of garlic
2 red onions
1 pinch of dried oregano
Olive oil
1 litre organic vegetable stock
A few sprigs of fresh basil
280 g ciabatta loaf
Red wine vinegar
Extra virgin olive oil

Method

Preheat the oven to 200 degrees C. Halve the tomatoes and place cut-side up in a large roasting tray.

Break the garlic bulb into cloves. Peel and slice the onions into 3cm wedges, then scatter both into the tray.

Sprinkle with oregano, season with sea salt and black pepper, then drizzle with oil. Roast for 50 minutes to 1 hour, or until the tomatoes are soft and sticky.

Scrape everything from the tray into a large pan, picking out and squeezing in the garlic, discarding the skins. Pour in the stock, then roughly chop and add the basil stalks with most of the leaves.

Cut the ciabatta loaf in half and tear one half into the soup. Bring to the boil, then simmer for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, put a griddle pan on a high heat. Slice the remaining ciabatta and griddle until lightly charred on both sides.

 

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