Yep, this is where it's at. After a bitter cold day out on the hockey field and aching muscles to go with it, a nice, warm, comforting bowl of soup really does hit the spot. This soup is one of my favourites and it tastes so, so good! Guess what, it's super duper healthy, too! What more could you ask for? 

A mix of beans and veg in a silky tomato based soup with the addition of pasta is a great stomach filler. Cooking this soup with  salty pancetta and adding a sprinkle of fresh basil and sharp parmesan cheese gives it such a nice flavour, that it's really hard to stop at one bowl. Honestly, YUM. 
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 2 strips of bacon, or the equivalent of pancetta (pancetta can be bought at a deli- an off-cut works best.), chopped
- 1 clove garlic, peeled then chopped
- 1 red onion, peeled then finely chopped
- 2 carrots, washed and chopped 
- 2 sticks celery, chopped
- 1 zucchini, chopped
- 1 small leek, washed and chopped
- 1/2 tsp dried oregano
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 big cans of chopped tomatoes
- 1 large potato, scrubbed and diced
- 1 can of chickpeas (garbanzo beans), drained and rinsed
- 4 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
-  Large handful of cabbage, chopped
- 1/2 cup pasta, any kind, (I like fusilli)
- a bunch of basil (optional) 
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- Parmesan cheese


1) Heat a large pot over a medium heat and add a splash of olive oil. 
2) Add the bacon and fry gently until it starts to turn brown. The smell should be great. 
3) Add the garlic, onion, carrots, celery, zucchini, leek, oregano and bay leaf. Cook slowly for about 15 minutes, occasionally stirring, until the vegetables have softened. 
4) Add the tomatoes, potato, chickpeas and the vegetable broth, then cover with a lid and bring everything slowly to the boil.
5) Turn down the heat and let simmer for about 30 minutes. Check that the potato is soft and cooked through. You can use a knife. 
6) Add the cabbage and pasta  and cook for 10 minutes, until the pasta is cooked. If the soup is too thick,just add some boiling water or broth until you reach your desired consistency
7) The basil is optional, but it gives the dish a nice touch. 
8) Grind some salt and pepper into the soup, and some more on the top of your bowl of soup, with of course the important addition of grated parmesan cheese! So GOOD. 

Makes about 8 bowls. 
This soup can be kept in a container in the fridge and can be reheated to eat.

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