Tomato-Basil Soup

1 1/2 cups onions, diced
1 T. olive oil
1 T. garlic, minced
4 cups vegetable stock or water
1 - 28 oz. can crushed tomatoes
2 T. tomato paste
3/4 cup frozen peas, thawed
1/3 cup orzo pasta (or star-shaped or other small shaped pasta)
1 T. unbleached cane sugar (or white sugar from sugar beets)
3/4 t. salt
1/2 t. freshly ground black pepper
2 cups spinach, triple washed, destemmed, and roughly chopped
1/2 cup freshly chopped basil
3 T. freshly chopped Italian parsley
garnish: soy parmesan cheese or nutritional yeast flakes

In a large stock pot, saute the diced onion in the olive oil for 5 minutes to soften. Add the garlic and saute an additional 2 minutes. Add the vegetable stock, crushed tomatoes, and tomato paste, stir well, and bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce to medium heat, add the peas, orzo pasta, sugar, salt, and pepper, and cook for 5-7 minutes or until the pasta is al dente. Add the spinach and fresh herbs and simmer the soup an additional 2 minutes to allow the flavors to blend and the spinach to wilt. Taste and adjust seasonings, as needed. Garnish individual servings with a little soy parmesan cheese or nutritional yeast flakes, if desired.

Yield: 2 Quarts


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The Vegan Chef
©1999-2002  Beverly Lynn Bennett