Hearty Minestrone Soup


2 slice(s) Bacon, chopped
2 medium Carrots, cut into 1/4-inch dice
1 medium Onion, cut into 1/4-inch dice
1 large Celery Stalk, cut into 1/4-inch dice
2 clove(s) Garlic, minced
3 medium (about 1 pound) All-Purpose Potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch dice
1 can(s) (14 1/2 ounces) Chicken Broth
1 1/4 teaspoon(s) Salt
1/4 teaspoon(s) Coarsely Ground Black Pepper
1/4 teaspoon(s) Dried Thyme
1 can(s) (19 ounces) White Kidney Beans, (cannellini), rinsed and drained
1/2 pound(s) Green Beans, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
1/3 cup(s) Small Pasta, such as cavatelli, tubettini, or ditalini
1 pound(s) Swiss Chard, chopped, with tough stems discarded
1/2 pound(s) Spinach, tough stems discarded
1/2 teaspoon(s) Freshly Grated Lemon Peel
Grated Parmesan Cheese, (optional)


In 6-quart saucepot, cook bacon over medium heat until browned. With slotted spoon, transfer bacon to paper towels to drain; set aside.
To drippings in saucepot, add carrots, onion, and celery, and cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are browned, about 15 minutes. Add garlic and cook 30 seconds longer.
Add potatoes, broth, salt, pepper, thyme, and 6 cups water; heat to boiling over high heat. Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer 10 minutes.
Add kidney beans, green beans, and pasta; cook 7 minutes longer. Stir in Swiss chard, spinach, and lemon peel; cook 5 minutes longer or until greens are wilted and tender. Stir in bacon. Serve with grated Parmesan if you like.

Recipe shared from: http://www.countryliving.com/recipefinder/hearty-minestrone-878