GARDEN VEGETABLE LASAGNA SOUP
I was looking forward to lasagna this week; it’s been in the upper 80s in New Orleans, so I made it with garden vegetable soup instead. Lasagna soup is an excellent choice because it has all the fantastic flavors of lasagna without being quite heavy. To lighten the load further, I developed a vegetarian version packed with veggies, including onion, tomato, zucchini, carrots, and even spinach.
VEGETABLE SOUP VS. LASAGNA SOUP
What makes this a Garden Vegetable Lasagna Soup, not an ordinary tomato-based vegetable soup? This isn’t just about the broken lasagna noodles. It’s the generous dollop of three cheese ricotta hidden in every bowl’s bottom. This melting cache of cheese resembles the creamy filling from classic lasagna and connects everything.
GARDEN VEGETABLE LASAGNA SOUP… WITH MEAT
Do you want to make some meat lasagna soup? It’s not a problem. You can brown about 1/2 1 lb. Italian sausage in a pot before adding the onions and garlic in the second step below. Since Italian sausage comes with flavorful Italian seasonings, You can also reduce the quantity of Italian herb mix listed below by half.
OTHER VEGETABLE OPTIONS
Are you not a fan of all of the veggies I chose to use? Other veggies are also suitable for this soup, including slices of summer squash, mushrooms, and broccoli leaves. Make any combination that appeals to your palate, but limit the amount of vegetables you use to 3-4 so the lasagna’s taste doesn’t become over the top.
One tablespoon olive oil ($0.16)
One yellow onion ($0.40)
Four cloves of garlic ($0.32)
2. 2 carrots ($0.24)
One zucchini (1/2 lb.) ($0.77)
15 oz. can of chopped tomatoes ($0.65)
15 oz can tomato sauce ($0.70)
1 Tbsp Italian seasoning mix ($0.30)
4 cups vegetable broth* ($0.52)
8 oz lasagna noodles ($0.95)
1/4 lb frozen spinach ($0.40)
THREE CHEESE RICOTTA BLEND
15 oz ricotta ($2.99)
1 cup shredded mozzarella broken into pieces ($1.00)
1/4 cup Parmesan (grated or shredded) ($0.48)
1/8 tsp salt ($0.01)
Freshly cracked pepper ($0.03)
Cut the onion in half and mince the garlic. Place them both in a large soup pan along with olive oil. Cook at medium-low temperature until the onions become translucent and soft (about 3 to 5 minutes).
While the garlic and onions are cooking, cut and peel the carrots, cut the zucchini into slices, and slice the pieces into quarters. Add the zucchini and carrots to the pot, and cook for 2 to 3 minutes or until the zucchini softens.
Add diced tomatoes (with juices), tomato sauce, Italian seasoning mix, and vegetable broth into the soup bowl. Mix well. Cover the pot rai, set the heat to medium-high, and make sure the water comes to a simmer.
While waiting for the soup to heat, break pasta noodles into pieces of 1 inch. Once the soup has reached a boil, add the lasagna noodles. Let it boil for between 10 and 12 minutes or till the noodles become soft.
While the pasta boils within the soup, mix the ricotta, 1/2 cup of mozzarella shreds, Parmesan, salt, and freshly cracked pepper in the bowl (save the remaining half of the mozzarella to use as toppings for each soup bowl). Mix till the cheeses are well mixed and the spices are well blended.
Once the pasta is soft, Add the spinach that has been frozen to the soup and mix until it has frozen and well incorporated into the soup.
To serve, put a tablespoon of the cheese mixture in each bowl, and then pour the soup hot over the top. You can sprinkle a little of the remaining mozzarella to the top.