Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Moroccan Vermicelli Vegetable Soup

If you like minestrone, you will definitely like "Moroccan Vermicelli Vegetable Soup" (page 154).  The broth is tomato based, with onion, celery, carrot, and zucchini, plus garbanzo beans, and vermicelli for the pasta.  But this is minestrone with a flavorful twist, spiced up with cayenne, smoked paprika, and cumin.  I didn't have any za'atar, an optional spice listed in the ingredients, but when I looked it up, it seemed very close to Italian seasoning, so I used that instead.  I also added fresh minced garlic at the end of the cooking time, just because.  For reasons I can't figure out, the recipe called for a 28 ounce can of diced tomatoes, drained.  It seems to me it would add more flavor not to drain the tomatoes, so I used a 14.5 ounce can of tomatoes, with their juices.  The only other change I made was to omit the oil when sautéing the vegetables, using a little broth instead.  This is a lovely soup that tastes even better the next day.

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