Minestrone Soup and Cobblestone Bread

Tracy shares two of her favorite recipes just in time for winter.  Enjoy!
I think this soup and this bread go together wonderfully. They contain the same seasonings and are both very easy to create. There is nothing like the aroma of fresh bread baking and I think this bread is fantastic. The italian seasonings are mixed throughout and I don’t even butter it. I like the soup because it is so full of yummy veggies. If you are a person who really likes meat you could add some italian sausage but I like it as is and the beans add protein so you don’t really need meat.

Minestrone

1 large onion, chopped
3 Tbsp. olive oil
2 celery ribs, chopped
2 medium carrots, chopped
1 cup cabbage, chopped
1 medium green pepper, chopped
1 medium zucchini, chopped
6 garlic cloves, minced
3 1/2 cups water
2   14 oz. cans diced tomatoes, undrained
1  15 oz. can garbonzo beans or chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1  15 oz. can tomatoe puree
1  8 oz. can tomato sauce
3  Tbsp. dried parsley
2 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
1/2 cup small pasta shells
In a dutch oven, saute onion in oil for 2 minutes. Add the celery, carrots, cabbage, green pepper, zucchini and garlic, saute 3 minutes. Stir in water, tomatoes, beans, tomato puree, tomatoe sauce and seasonings. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer 15 minutes. Stir in pasta and cook 12-15 minutes longer.
Cobblestone bread
1 cup water
2 Tbsp. butter, cut up
3 cups bread flour
1/3 cup grated parmesan cheesse
1 Tbsp. sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. dried italian seasoning
1  1/4 tsp. active dry yeast
2  Tbsp. butter, melted
1/2 tsp. dried italian seasoning
1/4 tsp. garlic salt
Select the 1 1/2 pound recipe size on your bread machine. Add the first 8 ingredients according to your machines directions (I do the dry first, creating a well for the yeast in the top, then carefully add the liquid around the dry ingredients). Select the dough cycle. When the cycle is complete, remove the dough and punch down. Cover and let rest 10 minutes.
Using scissors snip the dough into a greased 11x7x1 1/2 inch baking pan. Cut into 3/4 to 1 inch irregular pieces, covering the pan evenly in one or two layers. Cover and let rise in a warm place about 25 minutes or until nearly double in size.
Meanwhile, in a small bowl stir together the melted butter, italian seasoning and garlic salt. Drizzle over dough. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes. Serve warm.
If you do not have a bread machine I have been told that you can make the dough in your mixer. I do not have a stand mixer so I was unable to try it out but give it a try. If it works out for you it will be well worth it.
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