I’m a pretty fickle salad eater. As a starter, absolutely. Give me a plate of the green stuff, as long as something warm is coming afterward. I love bitter arugula, undulating butter lettuce, and delicate mache, but as the whole meal, I’m usually left wanting. Give me something hot, something filling, and good lord let it be easy to make because I’m too hungry to bother. Enter, minestrone. It’s basically my garbage disposal because I’m a notorious over buyer at the farmer’s market (everything looks so good, I can’t help it!). I just toss in every vegetable that I don’t see myself noshing on in the next couple of days, and leave it be, so there’s a ton of lee way with what you want to include. Consider this a blue print, your starting point for wherever you want to take it. The base of a good minestrone is cooked cannelini beans and their delicious broth, and I stock mine up with chopped tomatoes, zucchini, and tons of super crazy healthy kale. The best part? One pot is enough for a no-brainer lunch all week. Enjoy!



Serves 8-10

1 1/2 cups cannellini beans

8 cloves of garlic, minced

1 rosemary sprig

2 medium yellow onions, chopped

1 large carrot, peeled and diced

1 celery stalk, diced

1 large fennel bulb (or 2 smaller ones)

2 zucchini, quartered and sliced into 1/4 thick slices

3-4 tomatoes, cut into eights

1 head of broccoli, broken down into bite size florets

6 ounce kale

2 teaspoons oregano, finely chopped

1/2 cup flat leaf parsley, finely chopped

1/2 cup basil, chopped

4 cups vegetable broth

1-2 tablespoons nice balsamic vinegar (syrupy modena style is best)

olive oil


In a large pot toss in the cannellini beans, 3 cloves of garlic minced, sprig of rosemary, big pinch of salt, and 6 cups of room temp water. Bring the water to a boil over high heat, turn down to a simmer, and cover. Then go watch TV for 2 hours. The beans take forever, but it’s passive work, so just let them do their thing. You want them to be tender, and not too toothsome. To prep the other vegetables, chop the onion and fennel into equal sizes (about a 1/4 of an inch). Heat a large pot (this will be your soup pot) over medium heat and add about 2 tablespoons of olive oil, followed immediately by the onion and fennel. Season with a pinch of salt and cook until the onion and fennel are a little browned (about 5-10 minutes). Add the remaining garlic cloves and the oregano. After it’s browned a bit (about a minute) add the carrot and celery. To prep the kale, slice out the center rib of each kale leaf, then slice the leaves into 1 inch strips. Add the kale to the pot along with the cannellini beans, their cooking liquid (remove the rosemary sprig, it’s ok if the leaves fell off), and the stock. Bring the whole thing to a simmer (about 20 minutes), and add the broccoli, tomatoes and zucchini. After another 10 minutes, add the balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper to taste. The balsamic gives the whole thing a nice bit of body. Finish with the parsley and basil. Enjoy!