This is a big, chunky broth that I put together to celebrate the fact that spring was coming! I overestimated the size of my pan though and ended up leaving out some of the ingredients, including some extra stock which would have been useful as I kept it overnight. Make sure you use good quality stock, as the vegetables by themselves aren’t especially tasty. I used Knorr’s premade vegetable stock.
Serves a generous 4
Time to make close to an hour with inefficient time keeping and inexperienced chopping!
1.5 litres of good vegetable stock
1 crown of broccoli
4 plum tomatoes
100g green beans (French beans)
1 large courgette
Bunch of spring onions
3 measures of garlic (cloves, sliced, or tsps. of Bart’s)
1 bulb of fennel
Few springs of thyme
75g pasta for soup or broken spaghetti
Optional: a dollop of pesto or cream cheese or parmesan (or all 3?) for on top.
Optional: bread to serve with
* Prepare the veg – separate the broccoli into small florets. Slice the courgette thin, long slices. Chop the green beans in half and deseed the tomatoes and slice thinly. Finely slice the fennel and the onions. Heat some oil in a large saucepan.
* Fry the fennel, garlic and spring onions on a medium heat for around 15 minutes, making sure they don’t brown too much.
* Add the rest of the veg, the herbs, the pasta and the stock and seasoning then bring to the boil. Cover, then simmer for 10 minutes.
Serve hot with dollops of pesto (or whatever your prefer) and some good bread.