I frequently make soups and stews throughout the Autumn and Winter months. I love a steaming bowl of hot soup when it’s cold outside. In fact, I think soup is one of the ultimate comfort foods! I found this recipe for Tortellini Soup with Carrots, Peas & Leeks in one of my Fine Cooking magazines. I made a few slight changes but nothing that altered the finished soup significantly. I decided to use a medium-size onion (chopped) instead of the leeks because that’s what I had on hand. I wanted more veggies in the soup so I chopped 2 whole carrots and 1 stalk of celery, and added a bit more butter for sauteeing because I added more veggies. I let the veggies simmer for about 10 minutes longer than the recipe stated before adding the tortellini because the garlic I used was too pungent and needed to cook a bit longer. The package of cheese tortellini I used was 10 ounces so I added a cup or so more broth to the pot so the soup wouldn’t get too thick. For a heartier version, it’s also really good with Italian sausage. Just brown the sausage in a pan and add it to the soup pot when you add the broth. It’s a perfect weeknight meal in minutes!
Tortellini Soup with Carrots, Peas & Leeks
by Joanne Smart – Fine Cooking magazine
2 medium leeks (12 oz. untrimmed)
1 Tbs. unsalted butter
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped (about 1 Tbs.)
1/2 medium carrot, peeled and finely diced (2 Tbs.)
Freshly ground black pepper
5 cups low-salt canned chicken broth
8 oz. frozen cheese tortellini
1 cup frozen peas
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano or Grana Padano
Trim the roots and dark green leaves from the leeks. Slice the white and light green part in half lengthwise and then slice the halves thinly crosswise. Rinse well and drain.
Melt the butter in a 4-qt. saucepan over medium heat. Add the garlic, leeks, and carrot. Season with a couple pinches of salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender, 5 to 7 minutes. (It’s fine if the vegetables brown lightly.) Stir in 1/4 tsp. pepper and cook for about 20 seconds, then add the chicken broth and bring to a boil. Add the tortellini and cook for 3 minutes. Reduce the heat to a simmer and add the peas. Continue to simmer until the tortellini are cooked, 3 to 5 minutes.
Season to taste with salt and pepper. Portion the soup into warm bowls, top each with some of the cheese, and serve.
Make Ahead Tips:
You can make most of the soup ahead, but don’t add the tortellini until you’re ready to eat or they’ll become mushy.