Musical pairing – Perfect To Me by Al Green
We’re year-round soup fans here at Smith Bites – chilled soups during the warmer months and hot soups during the winter months. And with just a few exceptions, we make them from scratch using common pantry and/or ingredients I have tucked away in my freezer. Some soups are broth-based and some are cream-based but every soup is full of flavor and makes a terrific lunch or dinner. Roasted Red Pepper, chowder, lightening fast tomato, chili or hearty lentil, simply add a salad or some great crusty bread and voila’, dinner is served – it just couldn’t be easier!
This tortellini soup has just eight ingredients but comes together in about 20 minutes, tops – Girl Scout, cross-my-heart, hope-to-die, stick-a-needle-in-your-eye – I promise. This is real food, real fast, at its finest and does not skimp in the flavor department!
Now I must confess that I’m pretty much a sucker for any recipe where garlic makes an appearance and I’m even more giddy when the recipe reads ‘gar-lick-eeee’; that’s one word that makes my heart go all ‘pitter-pat’ (well, besides ‘The Professor’ . . .) This soup is all about the garlic but not in a vampire kinda way; the garlic plays quite nicely in the background while helping to anchor the other elements. In my book, that’s pretty near perfect!
GARLICKY TORTELLINI SOUP
Adapted slightly from Fine Cooking, Soups & Stews 2010
Serves 2 to 3 as a Main Course
2 Tbs. unsalted butter
6 to 8 cloves garlic, chopped
1 quart homemade or low-salt chicken broth (make this vegetarian by using vegetable broth)
6 oz. fresh or frozen cheese tortellini
14 oz. canned diced tomatoes, with their liquid
10 oz. kale, washed, thick spines removed and coarsely chopped; set aside
2 Tablespoons jarred pesto
Freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano (recommend using the real deal here if possible)
Melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the garlic and any of the chopped kale spines; saute until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add the broth, a pinch of salt and pepper, then bring to a boil. Add the tortellini and cook halfway, about 5 minutes for frozen pasta, less if using fresh. Add the tomatoes and their liquid, reduce the heat to a simmer, and cook just until the pasta is tender.
Stir in the kale and jarred pesto and cook until wilted, 1 to 2 minutes. Serve sprinkled with grated Parmigiano to your liking and add just a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil. Season with salt and pepper.