We just returned from a lovely, blue water, white sand and ocean breeze vacation to the biggest snow storm in twenty years. Tomato Orzo Soup was my answer to a quick dish after a long trip home.
I tidy up the house and clean out the fridge before heading out on vacation. Don’t you? A quick grocery stop for fresh veggies was necessary and after hours of travel something quick, healthy and comforting was in order.
I like loads of veggies in my soup, including the celery, onions, and carrots. This is a simple soup with easy ingredients, which makes this my go-to base soup. Garlic often finds it’s way into the soup but not in this recipe. When garlic is there, the oregano often follows; the flavor quickly changes.
After soup with rice or noodles is served, I cool it quickly. If the soup continues to cook the pasta sucks up the liquid and the broth becomes thick and cloudy. Cool soup quickly by dividing it between two or three stainless steel bowls. Don’t stick a hot pot of soup in the fridge to cool. It brings the temperature of the fridge down. It’s a food safety thing.
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 cup chopped sweet onions
- 1 cup chopped celery
- 1 cup chopped carrots
- 6 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
- 3 tablespoons tomato paste
- 2 teaspoons dried basil
- 2 teaspoons lemon pepper seasoning
- 1½ cups dry orzo noodles
- 2 cups raw spinach, chopped
- salt and pepper, to taste
- fresh lemon juice
- grated parmesan cheese, to garnish (optional)
- In a 2-quart pot, over medium heat sauté the onions and celery until tender, 8-10 minutes.
- Add the carrots, broth, tomato paste, basil, and lemon pepper seasoning and bring to a boil. Reduce to simmer, cover and cook for 15 minutes.
- Add the orzo and spinach to the soup, cover and cook for 10 minutes.
- Garish with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice and cheese.