The only Minestrone recipe you'll ever need - trust us!
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, finely chopped
2 carrots, peeled, cut into 1½ pieces
150g shortcut bacon rashers, chopped
2 x 410g cans rich and thick diced tomatoes with paste
1 litre (4 cups) chicken stock
400g can pinto beans, drained, rinsed
½ cup macaroni
2 zucchini, thinly sliced
1/3 cup chopped fresh basil
Grated parmesan, to serve
6 white bread rolls
1/3 cup garlic butter, softened
Heat oil in a stockpot over a medium heat. Add onion, carrots and bacon. Cook, stirring occasionally, for about 6 to 8 minutes, or until soft.
Stir in tomatoes, stock, beans and macaroni. Bring to boil. Cover with lid. Gently boil for 10 minutes. Remove lid. Add zucchini. Gently boil, uncovered, for a further 10 minutes, or until vegetables and macaroni are tender.
Remove pot from heat. Stir in basil. Season with salt and pepper.
Meanwhile, make garlic rolls. Cut rolls in half crossways. Spread cut-sides with garlic butter. Place, buttered-side up on an oven tray.
Cook in a moderate oven (180C) for about 10 minutes, or until golden and crisp.
Serve hot soup with parmesan and garlic rolls.
TIP! For a shortcut, replace garlic rolls, with shop-bought garlic bread. Soup can be made up to two days ahead. Cover and refrigerate. When reheating soup, add a little extra water or stock as it will thicken on standing.