Whitewater Cooks Minestrone Soup

Minestrone 12

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If hindsight is 20-20,

what is intuition?

I should have intuited, that after a long week of birthday planning
and no sleep..

the doctor would confirm an ear-infection.

No worries.. drugs were prescribed, along with a cough syrup that I hope

..will knock me out cold.

Except, now both of my children.. have headaches and sore throats..

…keeping the chickadees fed..

I should have also intuited this snowfall after all, we do live in Calgary

…and no one has their snow tires on yet..

… kind of looks like the icing on my last cake?

In case I don’t wake up from my coma in  a few days a week…

here is my favorite Whitewater Cooks soup. It started out as a simple Minestrone..
but feeling frugal

I added heaps of veggies that were languishing in my fridge’s crisper.

Comfort food is just what we need now,

because my son’s birthday is in just one week… and I have another cake to bake and a birthday to plan!

Until then..

I’m curling up under a thick fur blanket

..with the massive storm that has hit the Calgary region,

I plan to be here a while.

Whitewater Cooks Minestrone

Whitewater Cooks Minestrone Soup

Rating: 51

Whitewater Cooks Minestrone Soup


4-5 slices bacon, diced

2 tbsp butter

4-5 cloves garlic, minced

2 carrots, diced

1 large onion, diced

1 leek, white part only, diced

3 cups cabbage, shredded

1 zucchini, chopped

3-4 smaller new potatoes, skin on and chopped

1 small (4 inch) sweet potato, chopped

1 large handful spinach

8-10 button mushrooms, stems off and chopped

1 litre chicken stock

1 litre beef stock

2 tbsp tomato paste

1 cup dry red wine

4-5 leaves fresh basil

2 tsp dried oregano

2-3 stems fresh oregano leaves

black pepper, to taste

salt, to taste

1 14-oz tin butter beans

1 14-oz tin red lentils

2 roma tomatoes

1/2 cup small pasta

fresh parmesan for sprinkling


Fry bacon pieces in the bottom of a large stockpot until cooked through. Add the butter, garlic, carrots, onion and leek. Saute over medium heat until onions are translucent. Add in the cabbage, zucchini, new potatoes, sweet potatoes, spinach and mushrooms. Pour in the chicken and beef stocks and add the red wine. Add the basil, oregano, salt and pepper. Stir to mix and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for about 15 minutes.

Rinse and add the beans and red lentils, tomatoes, and pasta. Cook for an additional 10 minutes, simmering until the pasta is done. Adjust seasonings to taste.

Ladle into cups and sprinkle parmesan cheese over and serve.


Adapted from White Water Cooks



  • thekalechronicles - October 23, 2012 - 3:44 pm

    Sorry to hear that you and your children are under the weather, but this soup looks like it would be good for anything that ails you and the snow is beautiful. Get well soon.ReplyCancel

  • Sue Schlabach 129twigandvine - October 23, 2012 - 3:49 pm

    Snow? Nooooooooooooo. The soup looks like magic for being sick, and for snow outside the window. Feel better. Stay warm.ReplyCancel

  • frugalfeeding - October 23, 2012 - 4:07 pm

    Yay for frugal :D. Lookin’ good, Barb’! Hope you get better!ReplyCancel

  • Just Add Attitude - October 23, 2012 - 4:09 pm

    I am sorry to hear you are not well. Ear infections are the pits and often so painful. Sending you (and the children) lots of good well wishes from across the ocean. xoxReplyCancel

  • Danny - October 23, 2012 - 4:12 pm

    I hope you feel better soon! Enjoy that delicious soup and I hope the whole household gets back to well-being soon. I can’t believe that you already have snow! I had no idea you get it so early. It’s just a sign of things to come here in Chicago and I am sure that we’re going to get hit hard this winter. Feel better!ReplyCancel

    • boomiebol - October 23, 2012 - 4:35 pm

      Oh no…I am in Chicago…no snow yet or even at all please lolReplyCancel

      • Danny - October 23, 2012 - 4:37 pm

        Did I miss that in your post? I hope you’re enjoying our Fall — hope you didn’t get drenched from all the storms yesterday! ReplyCancel

        • boomiebol - October 23, 2012 - 4:38 pm

          Oh this isn’t Barbara…I read your comment on her post and responded ReplyCancel

        • Danny - October 23, 2012 - 4:40 pm

          Sorry, was combining replies and messed my last one up to you boomiebol :)ReplyCancel

          • Barbara Bamber | justasmidgen - October 23, 2012 - 9:18 pm

            No worries.. I’m often doing that! Once I made a typo of “crap” for “crab”.. I fear I will never live that one down.. and it was taken with good humor luckily!ReplyCancel

            • Danny - October 23, 2012 - 9:43 pm

              For a second, I thought you were in Chicago visiting my lovely city to get away from the snow you’re already having :)

            • Barbara Bamber | justasmidgen - October 23, 2012 - 10:30 pm

              I wish!

    • Barbara Bamber | justasmidgen - October 23, 2012 - 9:20 pm

      I think this virus is everywhere.. once a year I get sick and now that will be over with (I hope):) I hope your snow stays away a bit longer! ReplyCancel

  • gastrogardener - October 23, 2012 - 4:14 pm

    Oh no! Feel better – all of you… The soup should help!ReplyCancel

  • The Hook - October 23, 2012 - 4:31 pm

    Get well soon – all of you! Mortailty sucks, right?ReplyCancel

  • boomiebol - October 23, 2012 - 4:34 pm

    Feel well soon….snow yuck lolReplyCancel

  • cravesadventure - October 23, 2012 - 4:38 pm

    Soup looks delicious – thanks for sharing – here’s to getting well and back on your feet – Happy Tuesday:)ReplyCancel

  • Brittany - October 23, 2012 - 4:39 pm

    My goodness!! That is QUITE the snow fall you got!! I really hope the snow around my area holds off for a long time..I am not ready for it!! This soup looks perfect for a snowy day, and for a sick day! Feel better soon!ReplyCancel

  • Norma Chang - October 23, 2012 - 5:10 pm

    SNOW, NO!!!!! No snow please, not yet.
    Hope you and your children feel better real soon. That delicious soup should help.ReplyCancel

  • yummychunklet - October 23, 2012 - 6:01 pm

    I’m so excited for snow here in Chicago! Hope your kids feel better.ReplyCancel

  • Bam's Kitchen - October 23, 2012 - 6:02 pm

    I hope your feeling better soon! Moms can’t be sick you know the rule! I am certain that your beautiful minestrone soup will have everyone on recovery soon. Take care, BAMReplyCancel

  • hotlyspiced - October 23, 2012 - 6:03 pm

    I’m ignorant on North American weather but it does seem to me that the snow has arrived early. And that’s not a snow fall, that’s a dumping. But it looks so beautiful. My children have never seen snow! I hope you feel better soon. I have had a hectic time lately myself and I’m in such a mess as so many things have been neglected. My mother has been in hospital with a fracture for three weeks, we had my father’s 75th birthday, my father-in-laws 80th and relatives over for a dinner party last night. I’m staggering around today after too much red wine xxReplyCancel

    • Barbara Bamber | justasmidgen - October 23, 2012 - 9:13 pm

      It sure seems early to me.. but it’s snowed on Hallowe’en for as long as I can remember. (Because it ruined our costumes to have a coat over them, lol!) Your life sounds absolutely unhinged!! I wish I lived closer, I’d bring you some soup and your son could hang out with mine for a while and give you a break! I hope your mother heals quickly! xxReplyCancel

  • Korena in the Kitchen - October 23, 2012 - 6:06 pm

    The soup looks like just the thing to make you all feel better. Take care Barb!ReplyCancel

  • Tessa - October 23, 2012 - 6:45 pm

    Lovely soup! I hope you get better soon!ReplyCancel

  • rsmacaalay - October 23, 2012 - 7:31 pm

    Thats looks perfect for a cold day like that, hope you get better soonReplyCancel

  • spree - October 23, 2012 - 8:03 pm

    Oh, love, I’m so sad to hear you’re sick! Beef is not good for sick people! Only vegetables and maybe chicken and for sure naps and someone to read to you! I’m on my way! So, so sorry you’re sick! And what?! Honestly? (your pictures don’t lie) snow, already? Oh Smidge, you’re too good for this!! (who do I need to call?) :) xxooReplyCancel

  • jeanne - October 23, 2012 - 8:05 pm

    The pictures are beautiful…I would love to be curled up with a cozy blanket and hot cup of tea gazing out the window…ahhhh, yes!ReplyCancel

  • susielindau - October 23, 2012 - 8:51 pm

    Yum! Looks delish and healthy too! I hope you all are feeling better soon!ReplyCancel

  • Celia @ Fig Jam and Lime Cordial - October 23, 2012 - 8:52 pm

    I’m down and out with the lurgy as well, Smidge. I might go put a pot of minestrone on, thanks for the inspiration. Get well soon! xxReplyCancel

    • Barbara Bamber | justasmidgen - October 23, 2012 - 9:09 pm

      I’m sorry to hear you are sick too, Celia.. maybe you should nibble some chocolate?? I think it has all sorts of great healing properties:DReplyCancel

  • Choc Chip Uru - October 23, 2012 - 9:29 pm

    Oh my poor friend I hope everyone feels better – I’m sure your delicious soup helped :)

    Choc Chip UruReplyCancel

  • Tandy - October 23, 2012 - 10:00 pm

    Hope you feel better soon :) drink lots too of lemon water with honey, ginger and cinnamon.ReplyCancel

  • ChgoJohn - October 23, 2012 - 10:36 pm

    Sorry to read that your household is not just under the weather but battling it, too. Snow already? Yikes! Your method here is so very Italian. Use whatever vegetables you find in the fridge, add some beans, a little tomato “for color”, herbs, spices, stock, pasta, a glug of wine and you’ve got a great bowl of minestrone. Serve it with a chunk of bread and it will help “cure what ails ya.” If only it could do something about the snow on the driveway.
    I hope this soup and the antibiotics help you all bounce back ASAP, Barb.ReplyCancel

  • Cathy - October 24, 2012 - 12:03 am

    Mmmm, all those yummy vitamins… hope they get you all back to health soon!ReplyCancel

  • Promenade Claire - October 24, 2012 - 2:16 am

    there’s something special about the first sonowfall, well for me there is! I hope the lurgy i slong gone and you are feeling bright and chipper, I’m sure you will after the bowl of soup – and the bowl is beautiful !!ReplyCancel

  • cookinginsens - October 24, 2012 - 2:39 am

    You weren’t kidding about the snow! Looks like my kind of minestrone; chock full of vegetables. Hope you feel better soon.ReplyCancel

  • Food,Photography & France - October 24, 2012 - 2:55 am

    Great shot of the soup with the snow behind – lovely light. That does look like serious snow, the like of which we don’t get in France – well not hereabouts. Having said that, I can probably expect a freak winter now – get well soon:)ReplyCancel

  • Misky - October 24, 2012 - 3:50 am

    Did you win the Calgary top blog award? I see a little badge displayed!

    Love that soup. I love all soup, actually, but that one looks very tempting.ReplyCancel

  • Lesley - October 24, 2012 - 7:07 am

    Brrrrrr…. love those chickkadees, we are feeding blue and coal tits now. Lovely to see your weather, keep warm :)xReplyCancel

  • glutenfreezen - October 24, 2012 - 8:18 am

    First of all, get better! We can’t have you missing out on blogging…LOL We’ll miss you. Your soup looks so comforting. I love soup when I’m not feeling well. That’s a lot of snow! They keep threatening it here, but so far I think this morning we’re just frozen after a lot of rain yesterday.

    Get well soon! ~ April :)ReplyCancel

  • Eva Taylor - October 24, 2012 - 9:47 am

    I heard about that dump and immediately thought of you, Barbara! We’ve had nothing but teaming rain which is quite depressing, but not so much as a snow dump in October. And poor you with the ear infection, I hope you recover quickly. This soup is perfect medicine to heal sore throats and achy ears. I so feel like soup, but now snow. For snow I would like to place my order for December 24 around 4pm (after our drive to my brother’s place), but make sure it starts light and then overnight really dumps hard.ReplyCancel

  • Sibella at bakingwithsibella.com - October 24, 2012 - 9:54 am

    Excellent looking soup with so many good things inside! I can’t stop wondering about the snow. I know you are way North, but still, it’s just October… I hope every one is feeling better very soon! <3ReplyCancel

  • Bluejellybeans - October 24, 2012 - 10:12 am

    ¡Qué rico! ;) Soup looks delicious and your garden beautiful all dress in white. Get well soon :)ReplyCancel

  • Carolyn Chan - October 24, 2012 - 10:39 am

    It looks like being under the covers even when you’re well would be a nice place to be! Hope you all recover quickly in time for the party !ReplyCancel

  • Hetterbell - October 24, 2012 - 11:42 am

    Looks like real comfort food. I hope you feel much better very soon. xxxReplyCancel

  • vbholmes - October 24, 2012 - 12:27 pm

    An ear infection and snow? Definitely soup time. Wishes for a speedy recovery.ReplyCancel

  • Jed Gray (sportsglutton) - October 24, 2012 - 12:41 pm

    I little bit of everything to create a warming bowl of goodness to beat the chill. Love it.ReplyCancel

  • christinajane - October 24, 2012 - 3:18 pm

    Oh that last shot! Stunning. You write beautifully Barbara :)ReplyCancel

  • restlessjo - October 24, 2012 - 3:23 pm

    Pretty, pretty snow scenes. You need to be well for “trick or treat”! Bet your treats are gorgeous.ReplyCancel

    • Barbara Bamber | justasmidgen - October 25, 2012 - 8:10 am

      We just buy store bought chocolates here.. nothing homemade, the kids prefer the other:) Thankfully, I wouldn’t have time to bake these days!ReplyCancel

  • Ray's Mom - October 24, 2012 - 7:00 pm

    soup looks yummy, but the snow – I am not ready for that yet.ReplyCancel

  • Keep Calm and Eat On - October 24, 2012 - 7:49 pm

    Not sure what to think about snow…I miss it when it’s not here, hate it when it’s here for too long! But yes, soup and snow are great combos!
    Hope you are feeling better now.ReplyCancel

  • mjskit - October 24, 2012 - 9:59 pm

    What a super hearty and delicious soup!!!! I would definitely want this soup if I woke up to snow! We’re still in the 70’s which is unusual for this time of year. I would like it a little cooler, but I don’t want the snow! It’s beautiful as I can see in your picture, but please keep it up there in Calgary! :) Thanks for commenting on my blog because now I have found your beautiful space!!!!!ReplyCancel

  • wendy@chezchloe - October 25, 2012 - 10:07 am

    Time to snuggle in for a couple days. Enjoy the firsts of winter…snow, hearty soups, tea and hot chocolate.
    Your a generous mom throwing two parties and not a joint party with the birthdays so close.
    Feel better. xReplyCancel

  • Three Well Beings - October 25, 2012 - 11:08 pm

    I hope you’re beginning to feel better! Even if you are improving, I hope you’ll continue to slow down for just a little bit…rest is always good. What a beautiful post for someone who isn’t even feeling well, Barbara! The minestrone has to be the the best recipe for any soup! What abundance of vegetables. I think it would cure anything…the snow is amazing, too! Lovely…now you take care of yourself! :-)ReplyCancel

  • Mad Dog - October 26, 2012 - 8:50 am

    Look at all that snow! I hope you are all better now – I should think you need some chilli in the soup too, to keep out the cold ;-)ReplyCancel

  • richardmcgary - October 26, 2012 - 9:08 am

    Hi, Barbara. Hope your feeling a little better. We just gout our first real cold snap in DFW this morning. It’s 51 F and is supposed to get into the mid 40s, perfect time for some hot soups. This one sounds great!ReplyCancel

  • Karista - October 26, 2012 - 10:59 am

    It’s cold, rainy and snow in the mountains here. I think I need a bowl of this delicious soup. :) Beautiful as always Smidge. And love, love all the veggies. Hope you’re feeling better soon! Hugs!ReplyCancel

  • rutheh - October 27, 2012 - 6:02 am

    The soup looks like the perfect remedy. Hope everyone has recovered. Your snow photos give me a shiver right down my spine. Our turn will come. I can only hope it looks as lovely as your scenery.ReplyCancel

  • Karen - October 27, 2012 - 12:56 pm

    Soup always makes me feel better…I hope it does for you and your family.ReplyCancel

  • Coleen Patrick - October 29, 2012 - 9:32 am

    Hope you are all recovered! Warm soup is a great comfort–and the perfect component for feeling cozy on a cold night!ReplyCancel

  • Zen and Genki - November 16, 2012 - 1:17 pm

    Hope you are all feeling better soon! I know your post made me feel great! Thanks!

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