Harris says: “When I eat this soup I am taken back in time to my sweet granny’s quaint kitchen. I have such fond memories of sitting at her table with the plastic tablecloth and the ancient refrigerator within arms reach from the table.
“She would bring me a grilled cheese sandwich with this perfect vegetable soup and potato salad on the side. It is hard to think of a warmer memory than this. I have used her recipe, but with my twist, adding venison and pesto! How could it get any better than this?”
1 lb. venison, stew meat
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 onions, minced
1 celery stalk, finely sliced
2 carrots, finely diced
1½ cups butter beans
1½ cups corn
2 small potatoes
2 small zucchini, finely diced
6 tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and finely diced
1 cup shelled or frozen peas
2 quarts water, or just above vegetables
A handful of spinach leaves, cut into thin ribbons
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Sprigs of fresh basil, to garnish
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup (packed) basil leaves
8 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
8 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
4 tablespoons pine nuts
Hint: If you need dinner in a hurry and have a pressure cooker, cover the stew meat about 1½ inch with beef stock, onions, and ½ tablespoon of salt. Once the pressure cooker reaches a boil, turn it down to simmer and cook for about 15 minutes. Release the pressure and add to the soup.
1. Place garlic, basil, Parmesan cheese, and pine nuts in a food processor and process until smooth, scraping down the sides once. With the machine running, slowly add the olive oil through the feed tube.
2. In a stew pot, brown venison stew meat. Remove from pot.
3. Heat oil in a large saucepan. Add the onions and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until they are beginning to soften.
4. Add butter beans, corn, potatoes, zucchini, tomatoes, peas, and meat to the pot with 2 quarts of water. Bring to a boil then lower to a sim- mer for one hour or until the vegetables and meat are tender.
5. Add the spinach leaves and cook 5 more minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Add lemon juice of 1 lemon. Serve with pesto and Rustic Bread. Garnish with a sprig of basil.
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