The one and only green pesto minestrone (Lorraine Pascale)

What you need:

  • Oil
  • 5 bacon rashers, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 stick of celery, finely diced
  • 1 carrot, finely diced
  • 1/2 a butternut squash, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 squidges of tomato puree
  • 2 sprigs of rosemary leaves, finely chopped
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 large tomatoes, diced
  • 900ml of a good liquid stock
  • 150g of pasta (whatever you have in the house, I used penne)
  • 1x400g can of haricot beans, drained
  • 4 spring onions, finely sliced
  • Salt and pepper

Pesto:

  • 8 tbsp of ready-made pesto

OR… home-made pesto:

  • 60g of pine nuts
  • 60g of Parmesan
  • 140ml of extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 bunch of basil leaves only

Put the bacon in a pan with a drizzle of oil and cook over a medium heat until cooked.

Add celery and carrot and cook for around five minutes. Add the squash, garlic, tomato puree, two sprigs of rosemary, bay leaf, tomatoes, stock, pasta and season with salt and pepper.

Bring to the boil and let it bubble for as long as the pasta needs to cook.

Meanwhile, make the pesto if you are doing a home-made version. Put all the ingredients into a small blender and blitz, then set aside.

Once the pasta is cooked, add the beans and spring onions and cook for a few minutes until they are heated through.

Taste the soup. Season if necessary and divide between four bowls. Add 2 tbsp of pesto and serve. (Serves 4)

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