Lasagna Soup

A Soup that captures the flavors of your favorite lasagna recipe that doesn't weigh 9 lbs when you are finished. Loads of substitutions are available to personalize your soup experience.  When I first saw this soup on the net, I knew I had to make it, we have so many tomatoes from our garden that I can up into sauce, it sometimes is hard to use them all up.  I have a recipe from back in 2012 when we went to Italy for a lasagna with bechamel that is our family standard, but now I can have those flavors without the 9lbs, plus I rarely have room in my freezer for such things.
 

Lasagna soup

Servings:  6-8

Prep time:

Cook time:

Ingredients

  • 1/2 pound ground beef
  • 2 Italian sweet or spicy sausage, casings removed
  • 1 tbsp Olive Oil
  • 2 cups onions, diced
  • 1 carrot, diced
  • 1 stalk celery, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced fine
  • *Optional - 2 cups fresh greens, chopped - spinach, chard or kale
  • 1 tbsp fresh oregano (2 tsp if using dried)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 tsp granulated sugar
  • 2 tbsp rosemary, chopped (2 tsp crushed, dried)
  • 1 tbsp fresh thyme, chopped (2 tsp dried)
  • 1 tsp dried fennel (1 tsp seeds, crushed) * Optional
  • 1 tsp salt, pepper
  • 1 tbsp dried basil
  • 1 cup red wine
  • 1/4 cup of balsamic vinegar
  • 4 cups chicken broth (beef or vegetable if preferred
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup reserved pasta water
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream (*for a creamy soup - add before serving)
  • 1 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes (fire roasted if desired)
  • 1 14.5 oz crushed tomatoes
  • 3 tbsp tomato paste (half the can)
  • 8 oz Malfalda Pasta ( or other sturdy pasta)

 

Suggested Toppings
 

8 oz. ricotta cheese

1/2 c. grated Parmesan cheese

1/4 tsp. kosher salt

freshly ground black pepper, to taste

2 tbsp pesto (*optional)

1 tbsp finely chopped parsley to sprinkle on top of toppings

 

Instructions
 

  1. Place 1 tbsp olive oil over medium heat. Add the ground beef and sausage meat and begin browning - breaking apart as you go.
  2. When the meat is just about cooked through, but before you start getting caramelization, add the oregano, red pepper flakes, rosemary, thyme, basil, salt and pepper. Cook for 30-45 seconds until you smell the spices bloom - then add the fennel if using and the sugar.
  3. Immediately add the 1 cup of wine (if using) and allow to bubble and boil the alcohol off for 1-2 minutes. Add the 1 balsamic, water, and broth. Add the tomato mixtures of your choice as listed, 28 oz of tomatoes, plus the paste. Stir to thoroughly combine and bring to a slow simmer for about 1 hour to allow the flavors to meld. **At this point, you could cool, and refrigerate, or divide and freeze.
  4. Bring a large pot of water to boil over med-high heat. Just before adding the pasta, add 1 tbsp salt to the water and stir. Add the pasta and cook according to package directions, until al dente.
  5. Drain, reserving 1 cup of the pasta water, add this to the simmering soup. Add the reserved greens of your choice. Add the 1/2 cup of chopped basil.
  6. Adjust your seasonings, turn off the heat and allow the soup to sit while you prepare your toppings. Add the pasta to the soup - or half the soup, depends on how much you make. Keeping the noodles separate keeps them from becoming too soft. The greens will cook while you wait - at least 5 minutes. This is where you would add the cream if using.
  7. In a small bowl, mix the ricotta, parmesan, salt and pepper together, combine well. *If desired, add 1-2 tbsp prepared pesto.
  8. Ladle into bowls, add a spoon or two of the topping mixture - followed by a sprinkle of julienned basil leaves. Crack over some fresh pepper and enjoy.

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