Southern Tortellini Minestrone

I’m pulling out the southern girl card again and telling you that I love collard greens. More accurately described as a “big ole mess” of greens, seasoned with bacon drippings and served with a slab of hot, buttery cornbread, baked, of course, in a well seasoned cast iron skillet. A southern delight.

So how could I pass up a recipe for an Italian dish with a southern twist? I prefer the mild taste of the collards over kale or spinach; and collards are every bit as healthy as their green counterparts. Crushed red pepper gives it just the right amount of zip. This recipe makes a lot of soup; cut it in half and give it a try.

Southern Tortellini Minestrone

Southern Tortellini Minestrone
from Southern Living December 2007
Serves 8-10

1 medium onion, chopped
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 garlic cloves, chopped
2 (32-oz.) containers chicken broth
3/4 cup dry white wine
2 (14.5-oz.) cans Italian-seasoned diced tomatoes
1 (16-oz.) package frozen green beans
1 (16-oz.) package chopped frozen collard greens
3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
1/2 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
1 (16-oz.) package frozen cheese tortellini

Sauté onion in hot oil in a large Dutch oven over medium heat 8-10 minutes or until onion is tender. Add garlic, and cook 1 minute. Stir in chicken broth, white wine, and tomatoes and bring to a high simmer over medium-high heat. Add green beans, collard greens, and next 3 ingredients. Reduce heat to medium, and simmer, stirring occasionally, 15 minutes. Add tortellini, and cook 10 to 12 minutes or until pasta is done.

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