Though essential to the dish, alphabet noodles for alphabet soup can be a challenge to find. If you can’t find them at your local grocer, Vitacost.com offers a couple of options, both organic and conventional. Otherwise, substitute any other fun shape like farm animals. They may need another minute or two to cook.
|2||tablespoons olive oil|
|2||stalks celery, chopped|
|1||tablespoon chopped fresh thyme|
|Salt and pepper, to taste|
|1||can (28 ounces) diced tomatoes|
|10||cups vegetable stock or water|
|1||medium zucchini, chopped|
|½||cup frozen peas|
|2||ears fresh corn, kernels removed or 1 cup frozen corn|
|1||can (15 ounces) red beans, drained|
|1½||cups alphabet pasta or another tiny pasta shape|
1. In a soup pot over medium heat, heat the oil. Add the onion, carrot, celery, thyme, bay leaf, salt, and pepper. Lower heat to medium-low. Cover and cook for 15 minutes, stirring often.
2. Add the tomatoes and vegetable stock or water. Bring to a boil over high heat. Add the zucchini, peas, corn, beans, and pasta. Return to a boil, lower the heat, and simmer for 5 to 6 minutes or until pasta is tender but still has some bite.
3. Taste for seasoning, add more salt and pepper, if you like, and ladle into bowls. Karoline Boehm Goodnick