Canadian Minestrone

Canadian Minestrone

Ingredients

  • 6 slices bacon, diced
  • ⅔ cup onion, diced
  • ⅔ cup carrot, peeled and diced
  • ½ cup parsnip, peeled and diced
  • ⅔ cup green zucchini, diced
  • ⅔ cup red bell pepper, diced
  • 2 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp chopped fresh thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 14-oz tin white kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 14-oz tin diced tomato
  • 3 cup chicken stock
  • 2 Tbsp maple syrup
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 cup soup pasta, such as orzo or Acini di Pepe
  • 12 slices Canadian bacon
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • ¼ cup chopped Italian parsley

Instructions

1. Cook the bacon over medium heat in a large soup pot until crisp. Remove the bacon and reserve, draining all but 2 Tbsp of the bacon fat.

2. Add the onion, carrot and parsnip to the pot and sauté 5 minutes. Add the zucchini, pepper, garlic, thyme and bay leaf and sauté 1 minute more. Add the kidney beans, tomato, chicken stock and maple syrup. Cover loosely and simmer until the vegetables are tender, 20 to 30 minutes. Remove the bay leaf and season to taste.

3. While the soup is simmering, cook the pasta in boiling salted water until just tender, then drain and rinse to halt the cooking. Set aside.

4. Cook the Canadian Bacon slices in a sauté pan over medium-high, about 2 minutes on each side until cooked through.

5. To serve, rinse the cooked pasta under hot water to warm it, then drain. Spoon 2 Tbsp of pasta into each soup dish, then ladle the soup on top. Slice the Canadian Bacon into strips and place on top. Sprinkle each soup dish with Parmesan, parsley and reserved bacon and serve immediately.

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