Minestrone

This classic Italian soup made with cannellini beans and broken up spaghetti makes a comforting and budget-friendly supper. Feel free to stir in extra vegetables, depending on what you have in the fridge. This is designed to be a low cost recipe.

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 carrots, chopped
  • 3 large celery sticks, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp tomato purée
  • 1 x 400g/14oz tin chopped tomatoes
  • 1.2 litres/2 pints vegetable or chicken stock, made from a cube
  • 400g/14oz tin cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  • 100g/3½ dried spaghetti, broken into short lengths
  • ¼ head green cabbage, finely shredded
  • salt and pepper

Preparation method

  1. Heat the olive oil in a large lidded saucepan over a medium heat. Add the onion, carrots and celery, season with a little salt and pepper and cook for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally until the vegetables have softened.

  2. Add the garlic and fry for another minute. Stir in the tomato purée and cook for a further three minutes.

  3. Tip in the tomatoes and stock. Cover with a lid and bring slowly to the boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 15 minutes.

  4. Add the beans and pasta and cook for a further 10 minutes, or until the pasta is cooked. Add the cabbage and cook for another two minutes. If the soup is too thick, add some hot water to reach your preferred consistency.

  5. Season to taste with salt and pepper before serving.

Top recipe tip

In May 2013 this recipe was costed at £3.53 at Asda, £3.48 at Tesco and £3.82 at Sainsbury’s.
This recipe is designed to be made in conjunction with a
low-cost store-cupboard.

Required techniques

Less than 30 mins preparation time

30 mins to 1 hour cooking time

Serves 4