Tomato-Garlic Soup with Pasta Shells & Fresh Mozzarella
Serve this Italian-inspired garlic-laced soup as a main course with a chewy, crusty bread and a salad of bitter greens lightly dressed with balsamic vinegar.

  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 cup finely chopped carrot
  • 1/2 cup diced celery
  • 1/4 cup chopped shallots or onion
  • 6 garlic cloves--2 minced and 4 thinly sliced
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 can (28 ounces) tomatoes in puree
  • 3/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 ounces small rice pasta shells
  • 3 ounces part-skim mozzarella cheese, cut into small cubes

1. In large nonstick saucepan, warm 1 tablespoon of oil over medium heat. Add carrot, celery, shallots and minced garlic, and saute until vegetables are tender, about 8 minutes.

2. Stir in basil and sugar. Add tomatoes, water, pepper, and salt, and break up tomatoes with a spoon. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer 30 minutes to blend flavors.

3. Return soup to a boil over medium-high heat. Stir in pasta shells, pepper and salt. Reduce heat to medium and cook until pasta is tender, about 10 minutes.

4. Meanwhile, in a small nonstick skillet, warm remaining 1 teaspoon oil over medium-high heat. Add sliced garlic and saute just until garlic begins to turn brown, about 1 minute. Immediately scrape garlic and oil into a small heatproof bowl to stop cooking.

5. To serve, divide mozzarella cubes among 4 soup bowls. Ladle hot soup over cheese, sprinkle each soup with some of browned garlic and serve.

Nutritional Information
Per serving: 268 calories, 8.5g total fat, 2.8g saturated fat, 4.3g monounsaturated fat, 0.6g polyunsaturated fat, 3.9g dietary fiber, 10g protein, 40g carbohydrate, 12mg cholesterol, 716mg sodium.
Good source of: beta-carotene, calcium, fiber, iron, lycopene, manganese, potassium, vitamin B6, vitamin C.

Date Published: 09/19/2005 > Printer-friendly Version

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