1/2 lb. haricots verts, cut into 3 inch long pieces or in half
2 cups carrots, (1/2 inch dice)
2 cups red potatoes,or other (1/2 inch dice)
1 cup yellow squash (1/2 inch dice)
2 cups chopped yellow/white onion
2 cups chopped leeks, white and light green parts (3 leeks)
2 tsp. sea salt
2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
3/4 tsp. fresh ground pepper
3 qt. homemade vegetable stock (recipe below) or organic box stock
1 tsp. saffron threads
1 cup pesto (recipe below)
Fresh parmigiano reggiano for finish
Heat the oil in a large stock pot or dutch oven. Add onions and leeks and saute over low heat, until they become translucent. (about 10 minutes)
Add in potatoes, carrots, salt, pepper and saute over medium heat for 5 minutes. Add the vegetable stock and saffron. Bring to a low boil. Then, lower the heat and simmer uncovered until vegetables are tender but still firm. (about 15 minutes)
Add the haricot verts and squash. Simmer for another 5 minutes. Turn heat off, and let sit for 10 minutes. Taste for seasoning.
Remember you are adding parmigiano, which is salty, therefore wait until the end to add more salt if needed.
When ready to serve add 1/4 cup of pesto to hot soup. Then season to taste.
Serve soup in bowls and top with extra pesto and grated parmigiano.
Pesto (makes 1 cup)
Adding the tomato paste gives this traditional pesto a french flare
4 garlic cloves
25-30 large basil leaves
3/4 cup freshly grated Parmigiano cheese
1/4 cup tomato paste
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
Place the garlic, basil, tomato paste and parmigiana in a food processor and pulse a few times.
Start to add the olive oil and continue to pulse until incorporated. You do not want to over mix as the basil can get a bitter taste.
Can be made a few hours ahead and refrigerated. Bring to room temperature when serving.
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