Winter Minestrone

8 quarts

This is a sort of "clean-out-the-fridge" soup, as any variety of vegetables will do. The soup's rich flavor comes from tossing your old Parmesan rinds into the soup as it cooks, so DO NOT skip this step! Also, the addition of the garlicky pesto brightens the soup and even gives it a little kick. If you don't have time to make the pesto, toss in the fresh herbs at the end and swirl in a touch of garlic paste. All three of my kids willingly shove big spoonfuls of this season soup into their mouths. Truly, the highest of compliments. //Julie


// Heat the oil in the stockpot and add the onions, garlic, and mixed greens. Sprinkle with the salt and saute until the vegetables are slightly wilted, about 10 minutes.

// Add the beans, tomatoes, broth, Parmesan rind, carrots, and butternut squash and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 10 to 15 minutes, until the vegetables are tender but still firm.

// Add zucchini and yellow squash and cook, loosely covered, for 10 minutes, or until all vegetables are tender. If the soup is too thick, add more broth or water.

// Before ladling the soup into jars, fish out and discard the gooey cheese rinds. Season with salt and pepper.

For Delivery

Include 1 demi-baguette and one quarter of the herbs, pesto and cheese.

To Serve

Reheat the soup and stir in a few pinches of the fresh herbs. Add a dollop of pesto and grate cheese over the top. Serve with warm baguette.


  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 medium yellow onions, chopped
  • 8 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 bunches mixed greens (Swiss chard, mustard greens, and/or kale) finely chopped with stalk ends trimmed (about 15 cups)
  • 1 tablespoom salt, plus more to taste
  • 3 15.5-ounce cans cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  • 3 28-ounce cans diced tomatoes, with their juice
  • 3 quarts vegetable broth or chicken broth
  • 8 inches Parmesan rinds
  • 1 pound carrots, diced
  • 1 medium butternut squash, about 3 lbs, peeled, seeded and diced
  • 3 medium zucchini, diced
  • 3 medium yellow summer squash, diced
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 demi-baguettes
  • 2 cups chopped fresh herbs (flat-leafed parsley and oregano or whatever is in season)
  • 1/2 lb Parmigiano-Reggiano or Romano cheese
  • 2 cups pesto (made with kale and parsley)