Mark’s mom typically makes homemade chicken soup on Mondays but this Monday his parents were in California…SO, I decided to make the classic- Minestrone.

I have to say that this recipe was very light, yummy and full of tasty vegetables, beans and pasta shells.  We did all our shopping at the Whole Foods in South Lake Union…they offer the most beautiful produce available- after Pike Place hours, of course :0)

I did use a couple techniques adopted from the Pioneer Woman’s minestrone recipe  …  BUT I am the Pioneer SQUARE Woman so here is my take.

Start with…
- 2 zucchinis, cubed
- 2-3 butternut squash, cubed
- 8 oz white mushrooms, quartered
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- sea salt to taste

Then…
- 2 additional tbsp of olive oil
- 3-4 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 carrots, sliced (no need to peel)
- 1/2 mayan sweet onion & 1/2 yellow onion (OK to use 1 whole onion…I just happened to have two kinds ready to use)
- 8-9 cups of low sodium chicken broth
- 1 can cannelini beans, rinsed
- 1 can garbanzo beans, rinsed
- 1 cup green beans, cut
- 1-1/2 small pasta shells, uncooked
- 2 cans diced tomatoes with juice (I had a half of tomato diced and ready so I also threw that in)
- salt and pepper to taste
- dash of curry (BE CAREFUL- I let Mark to this because I often over do it)
- oregano, to taste
- parmesan cheese, to serve

Roasting veggies:

Preheat oven to 500 degrees
Mix zucchini, squash and mushrooms in a bowl with the olive oil and salt
Spread amount two sheet pans and roast in the oven for 5-10 min (until brown)
Remove from oven and set aside

The fun part:

In a large pot, heat olive oil/garlic and add carrots, onions and celery- stir/cook for 3 minutes
Pour in broth and bring to a boil
Reduce heat to low and simmer for about 10 minutes
Add cannelini, garbanzo beans and green beans- cook for 5 minutes
Add pasta- cook for an additional 5 minutes
Add canned tomatoes- stir/cook for an additional 5 minutes on low
Add salt/pepper/curry/oregano to taste
Add the roasted veggies last- stir/simmer/season before serving and feel free to add more broth if needed!

I garnished with fresh parmesan and parmesan crostini!

Note...Jack has been awfully lazy lately. When I was plating, he managed to position himself in the picture along with his mouse friend...as if he had been assisting the entire time. Sneaky guy!

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