Sunday, April 12, 2009

Fish Minestrone topped with Parsley Herb Pesto

I hope everyone had a wonderful Easter! We don't have any family in town, so we tried to enjoy the day by taking advantage of the beautiful sunshine and plan on having a nice dinner at home. Lately, I have been cooking quite a bit from my favorite big headed beauty's new cookbook, Giada's Kitchen.

Giada's Kitchen
I love her new collection that focuses on fresh ingredients and a bit of a California spin on recipes like this Fish Minestrone Soup. Aside from the great food, the cookbook also seems to offer uh, a little bit of candy for the eyes. Giada's stylist has an uncanny knack for picking out tops that accentuate her I mean, is this cookbook G-rated? The Giada montages are something else!

Well, if anything, Giada's latest seems to have gotten hubby more interested in picking out dishes for dinner so I suppose that's a plus.

I had a few initial doubts about this soup as the actual broth isn't seasoned with anything more than salt and pepper. The mixologist in me felt inclined to run to the spice rack, but I resisted and just followed the recipe for once.

The fish seasons the broth nicely and a mixture of oregano, fresh Italian parsley and olive oil tops the soup and really kicks up the flavor. Giada calls it an herb sauce, but as you can see from the photos it's a little bit more of a pesto consistency so I've taken the liberty to rename.

Contrary to my assumption, the minestrone was full of flavor and quite hearty. Zucchini, carrots, onions, garbanzo beans and cannelini beans round out the soup nicely and are certainly a nice change from the typical Italian tomato based minestrone.

I highly recommend checking out Giada's Kitchen (for both the recipes and your husband's entertainment) and plan on making the Grilled Shrimp with Tomato Artichoke Broth tonight!

Fish Minestrone with Herb Pesto
adapted from Giada's Kitchen

2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 cup sweet onion, diced
2 carrots, peeled and thinly sliced
2 zucchini, trimmed and thinly sliced
1 1/2 cup fresh green beans, cut into bite size pieces
1 can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
1 can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
6 cups low sodium chicken broth
1 lb red snapper filets
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground pepper

Herb Pesto Topping
2 cups fresh flat leaf parsley leaves
1/4 cup fresh oregano leaves
1 garlic clove
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onions, carrots, zucchini and green beans. Stir to combine and cook until tender, about 10 minutes. Add the beans and the broth. Cook until the broth simmers, about 5 minutes.

Season both sides of the fish fillets with kosher salt and pepper and add them to the soup. Simmer until the fish is cooked through. Season the broth with salt & pepper.

For the herb topping:
While the fish cooks, combine the parsley, oregano, garlic & white wine vinegar in the food processor. Pulse the machine until it forms a paste. Add olive oil in a steady stream while the food processor runs. Add salt and pepper.

Ladle soup into bowls and top with the herb pesto as desired.


Dewi said...

What a beautiful soup Sharon. Love the parsley pesto for the soup. I am sure adds more flavor to the minestrone.

Esi said... crack me up! I have come to like Giada's personality less as the years go by (but I mostly blame that on producers), but her recipes continue to be awesome so I keep making them. This soup looks awesome!

My friend met her at the Emmys last year and said she was a total sweetheart.

noble pig said...

Did you know there is a blog dedicated to just her cleavage? Yep there is!

Happy easter to you and the soup sounds beautiful.

Elyse said...

Mmm, this soup sounds delicious! I'm so glad it surprised you. I love the combination of garbonzo and cannellini beans in the soup. Plus, the parsley herb pesto sounds amazing!

Jenn said...

That's one beautiful looking soup. It looks too good to eat.

LizNoVeggieGirl said...

LOOOVE Giada's cookbooks!! And pesto :-)

I had the pleasure of meeting Giada a few years ago at an event, and she's so lovely!! Very personable and NOT snooty at all.

Jeff said...

I heart Giada and going to have to page through this cookbook to see her uhh..big smile.

Who knows it may even make my coffee table.

Great recipe and awesome job!

kat said...

Yeah, I think my husband has a healthy interest in Giada too.

Anonymous said...

I'm a soupaholic so this is perfect!

Thanks for sharing,


s. stockwell said...

Yes indeed, Giada rocks! love the pictures. best, s

Jennifer said...

That is absolutely beautiful, and I bet it was tasty! Giada, I am impressed they are REAL! LOL

Scate said...

I refer to Giada as my husband's girlfriend. I think she can hold that title for many foodie men out there! I have to admit that the title sounded - - fishy. But the pictures look great - and it looks like something to try! Thanks for sharing.

Mo said...

Now this is totally my kind of soup!

Sophie said...

You are the seafood queen! This soup looks so beautiful and fresh; must make soon!

Zesty Cook said...

Sharon, this looks amazing. Thanks so much for sharing it. Great pictures

Pam said...

Wow! This looks so delicious Sharon.

La Cuisine d'Helene said...

That's a beautiful minestrone.

Kerstin said...

What a lovely soup - I love all the types of beans in it!

MaryBeth said...

Your soup looks amazing, your picture is wonderful

Donna-FFW said...

What a comforting, delicious bowl of soup.. Love the addition of the pesto..

Pearl said...

oh sharon that soup looks incredible!

may i add you to my blogroll? i love your accumulation of creative recipes!

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

What a delicious looking minestrone! Really beautiful and appetizing!



Anonymous said...

beautiful! I love Giada and her recipes, though you're right, she does love to flash her...
But oh well, she knows her assets and good for her to be confident and proud of them I guess. And I think she attracts a lot of males, so that now it's almost "cool" for men to be into cooking! that's always a good thing, right?

Aggie said...

That looks delicious!! I love that cookbook! I recently checked it out from the library and now I want to buy it!!

Christina Kim said...

Hi Sharon, thank you for visiting and commenting on my blog!!! I am always honored to get any new readers, as I'm still quite a novice at blogging. Anyhow, I will be following you on my reader... btw, this soup looks lovely, I adore Giada's recipes!

grace said...

although fish isn't my thing, i love every other aspect of your soup. i've never had a soup topped with pesto, but i really like the sound of it--thanks for the idea!

Anonymous said...

Cool Giada! We met her while she was doing a cooking show in LA. I love your blog!

The Blonde Duck said...

That's a great twist! Ben loves minestrone and I love fish, so it's perfect!

Pearl said...

hi sharon! thanks for replying :)
you know, i actually bought the magic bullet and tried to make a nut butter in that. except the magic bullet got really hot and couldn't reach all of the nuts evenly; so it ground some, but others were left completely whole.

glad to know that you enjoy the magic bullet, though - i heard it's fantastic for quick smoothies/shakes/dressings, etc. i hope you're having a great week so far!

The Wife in Stilettos said...

hi sharon, love your blog. can i check in for your recipes from time to time?

La Bella Cooks said...

After meeting Giada against last year I have a new found respect for her. She is a sweetie. My hubby saw this recipe and started asking for it long ago. I guess I better get going and give this a try. It looks and sounds perfect.

Bunny said...

This is definetly something I'd try, it looks so good with all those veggies giving it color!

Maria said...

I need to try this one. I love Giada's newest book!

Heather said...

so gorgeous! i would never have thought to do fish minestrone, but it sounds delicious!

Ana Powell said...

Hi Sharon
Beautiful recipes, looks really awesome.
Have a great weekend x