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Hearty minestrone soup

Hearty minestrone soup

Colourful and warming, this soup is perfect for those chilly autumn evenings


  • 1 garlic clove
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • Half a brown onion, roughly chopped
  • 160g smoky bacon lardons (leave out for a vegetarian option)
  • 1 large carrot, roughly diced
  • 2 celery sticks, chopped
  • 3 large sprigs of thyme
  • 400g tinned chopped tomatoes
  • 1l chicken or vegetable stock
  • 100g dried pasta shapes
  • 125g runner beans, roughly sliced
  • 2 large handfuls of kale, shredded
  • 400g tin of borlotti beans
  • 2 corn on the cob, cooked (and charred, optional)
  • Seasoning to taste
  • Crusty bread and Parmesan to serve


  1. Peel and finely chop the garlic. In a large saucepan, heat two tablespoons of oil. Cook the onion for five minutes. Add the garlic and lardons, and cook for a further two minutes. You may need to add a splash of water if it begins to stick to the bottom.
  2. Add the carrot, celery and sprigs of thyme to the pan and stir to coat in the oil. Pour in the tinned chopped tomatoes and stock. Bring to the boil, then simmer for 15 minutes. Add the pasta shapes and cook for eight or nine minutes.
  3. Add the runner beans, kale, borlotti beans and sweetcorn, and cook for a further three minutes or until the runner beans are cooked. Season with salt and pepper. Serve in bowls with crusty bread and Parmesan shavings.

Recipe by Jody Spencer

Taste Buds chef: Jody Spencer

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