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“O Lord, make this Lenten season different from the other ones. Let me find you again. Amen.” —Henri Nouwen

Creamy Tortellini Vegetable Soup

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 2-4 cloves garlic, minced or grated
  • 2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves (or 2 teaspoons dried)
  • 1 tablespoon dried basil
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1-2 teaspoons fennel seeds use to your taste
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 pinch crushed red pepper flakes
  • kosher salt and black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 6 carrots, chopped
  • 4 celery stalks, chopped
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine, such as Pinot Grigio or Sauvignon Blanc
  • 6 cups low sodium vegetable broth
  • 4-6 cups roughly chopped kale
  • 1/2 cup whole milk or heavy cream
  • 1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese, plus more for serving
  • 1 pound fresh cheese tortellini

Directions:

Slow Cooker

  1. Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. When the oil shimmers, add the onion, garlic, thyme, basil, oregano, fennel, paprika, and a pinch each of salt and pepper. Cook 5 minutes, until very fragrant. Remove from the heat and add to the bowl of your crockpot. Stir in the tomato paste, carrots, and celery.
  2. To the crockpot, add the wine, broth, and a pinch of red pepper flakes. Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours or on high for 4-5.
  3. During the last 15 minutes of cooking, stir in the kale, cream, parmesan, and the tortellini.
  4. Serve the soup topped with additional parmesan and fresh oregano, if desired.

Instant Pot

  1. Set Instant Pot to sauté. Add the olive oil, onion, carrots, celery, garlic, thyme, basil, oregano, fennel, paprika, and a pinch each of salt and pepper. Cook 5 minutes, until very fragrant. Stir in the tomato paste. Turn the Instant Pot off.
  2. To the instant pot, add the wine, broth, and a pinch of red pepper flakes. Cover and cook on high pressure for 6 minutes.
  3. Once done cooking, use the natural or quick release function. Set the Instant Pot to sauté. Stir in the kale, cream, parmesan, and the tortellini. Cook until the kale is wilted, about 10 minutes. Turn the Instant Pot off.
  4. Serve the soup topped with additional parmesan and fresh oregano, if desired.

Stove-Top

  1. Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. When the oil shimmers, add the onion and cook 5 minutes, until golden. Add the carrots, celery, garlic, thyme, basil, oregano, fennel, paprika, and a pinch each of salt and pepper. Cook another 5 minutes, until very fragrant. Stir in the tomato paste. Add the wine, broth, and a pinch of red pepper flakes. Simmer over medium heat for 20-30 minutes, until the carrots are tender.
  2. About 10 minutes before serving, stir in the kale, cream, parmesan, and the tortellini.
  3. Serve the soup topped with additional parmesan and fresh oregano, if desired.

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