Saturday, December 13, 2008

Souper Saturday

I tend to think about this soup a lot, mainly because I like lasagne A Lot. However, I don't often feel like making lasagna a lot, especially in the summer months when the idea of the oven on for 45 minutes or so has very little appeal. So winter or summer, this is a good one because it's a stove top one and can even be done in a crockpot . I think I would brown the meat first though. My batch is for next week, so the pasta has NOT been added yet.


photograph by Marilyn at GardenWeb


1 pound ground beef (sirloin or chuck)
1 large onion; chopped
5 cloves garlic; minced
4 cups beef broth
15 oz. can crushed tomatoes
15 oz. can diced tomatoes
1 can Campbell’s tomato soup
1 teaspoon dried basil
4 oz. fresh baby spinach leaves
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 1/4 cup mafalda pasta (mini lasagna noodles)
Salt and pepper to taste
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese

Brown ground beef in a large soup pot over medium heat. Add onions and continue to cook until onions are tender, stir in garlic and sauté for another minutes. Add broth, tomatoes, soup and basil; bring to a simmer and cook covered for 30 minutes to blend flavors. Meanwhile cook pasta until al dente, drain and toss with olive oil. Add spinach and pasta to the soup and simmer uncovered until spinach wilts, 1 or 2 minutes. Taste soup and season with salt and pepper.

To serve, place 1/4 cup mozzarella cheese in the bottom of bowl and ladle hot soup on top to melt cheese. Garnish top with Parmesan cheese and serve immediately. Serves 4 generously.

Recipe inspired by Lasagne Soup from Cuisine at Home magazine via Marilyn at GardenWeb.

My notes - the pasta will swell quite a bit if you save any leftover soup. You may like that, you may not. I would suggest doubling this if you like it and freezing half to add pasta later. I do find pasta will freeze quite nicely - for a soup like this - if coated with a bit of oil and microwaved for a bit from the frozen state.

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