- 3 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (Try to use a good quality oil. U.C. Davis Olive Center preforms quality testing on all major brands. Read more here.)
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 yellow or white onion, diced small
- 2 celery stalks, chopped
- 2 large carrots, peeled and chopped
- 1/2 yellow, orange or red bell pepper, seeded and diced (It helps with flavor if you remove all the white membrane from the inside, as it tends to be bitter.)
- 3 large, very ripe tomatoes or 1 15-ounce can of diced tomatoes (If you can find it, Muir Glen Fire Roasted Diced Tomatoes has the most amazing flavor...even better than fresh, if that's possible!)
- 1 15-ounce can of chickpeas/garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed, or 1 1/3 cup fresh cooked garbanzo beans (This is one of those ingredients that isn't necessarily going to taste much better if you make it fresh or used canned, as long as you use a high quality brand that doesn't add a bunch of junk to the ingredients.)
- 4 cups or 32 ounce carton vegetable stock/broth (If you are not vegetarian, you can try playing with the flavor and add chicken broth instead.)
- 6-8 fresh basil leaves
- 1 cup Savory or Napa cabbage, washed, dried and shredded
Be sure all your vegetables are prepared before you start cooking. Use a large pot or stockpot with a heavy bottom if you have one. Add the oil, and heat it over medium heat. Add the minced garlic and onion once the pot and oil are hot, but not before then! Cook for about 4 minutes or until the onion looks translucent. You might want to stir it around a bit so it doesn't burn or brown too much. Add the celery, carrots, bell pepper, tomato, chickpeas and broth. Bring to a boil. Once the boil begins, turn down the heat to a simmer, and cook for 10 minutes.
Basil Chiffonade. Take your basil leaves and stack them together in a tight pile. Start at one end and roll up the basil leaves into a tight tube. Hold the tube as tightly as you can against the cutting board, and slice very thinly through the tube. Toss the chiffonade to seperate. You just chiffonaded your basil. How do you feel? See, I told you that you had hidden knife skills!
Right before serving, stir the basil and cabbage into the soup and heat just until they are soft (the basil will turn a beautiful bright green). Add salt and pepper to taste. Enjoy with multi-grain, gluten-free bread, gluten-free crackers (Mary's Gone Crackers are my favorite), or a salad.
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