Saturday, March 23, 2013

Heart Healthy Spring Soup...

Note: Looking back over 2014 blog posts, when it came to recipes, this was the most downloaded. It still remains at the top of the "hit" list each week. It is simple and delicious. So, if you missed it, here it is one more time! Enjoy!

He just won't let go. As I write this, Old Man Winter is pointing his icy finger in our direction again with another week of cold temperatures and the possibility of a winter storm, which is ironic since it is SPRING! We should be planning our outdoor recipes but instead the grill remains covered and the patio furniture snugly locked away. With that in mind, we will offer up one more Saturday soup that is actually light enough to serve in the warmer months and healthy enough to eat year round!

I call this "almost" home made soup because you can easily use store bought broth since such flavor is added, no one would know the difference. It also takes such little time to make, you won't need a pot simmering on the stove all afternoon. I don't know where this recipe came from since it is written on fading piece of paper and stuffed in my recipe folder. But I know it quickly became a family favorite, and the time this was deemed "heart healthy" and one look at the ingredients will explain why.


(1) 32 oz can, plus (1) 12 oz can of your favorite low-sodium chicken broth
(3) tbls of extra virgin olive oil
(4) gloves of finely minced garlic
(1) 14 oz can of diced tomatoes with juice
(1/4 cup) of white wine
(1) bag of baby spinach
(1 or 2 - if you prefer more) bag(s) of Barilla 3-cheese tortellini


Saute the minced garlic slowly in the olive oil so as not to burn (I've done this, and there is no way to fix burnt garlic - so nice and slow!) Add the wine. Once the steam cooks off the alcohol, add the can of diced tomatoes and let simmer for about 20 minutes on very low setting. Now add both cans of the chicken broth. Once this mixture is bubbling, add the bag of baby spinach. Now you have something really wonderful cooking!

The last step is strictly personal preference. I boil water in a separate sauce pan to cook the tortellini's in. You could add it directly to the broth to, but I don't like all the starch that it adds so I cook and drain separately, so the pasta doesn't become a thickening agent in the soup. I do this with all soups that require some type of pasta because it is the way I prefer it. Make it the way that you would like it. After I drain the pasta, I add it to the simmering sauce and "boom", you have the tastiest, quickest, almost homemade soup you can make. With the spinach, the garlic, the white wine and olive oil,  I call it my "Heart Healthy Tortellini Soup", but you can call it anything you want. Add a loaf of good crusty bread and you have a meal!

Left over chicken? Dice and throw it in!!

Photos by ImageGoggle