Creamy Tortellini Soup (Vegetarian)
Here’s a wonderful, creamy, vegetarian soup you can eat warm or cold!
I’ve made this twice now. It was better than expected the first time, and then I tweaked it to be even better the second time. My roommate and I were sold on this at first bite – and then declared our love for it when we discovered it’s yummy cold as well. Note: the picture is from the first attempt, so it has less mushrooms and spinach than my modified recipe.
Here is the modified recipe with notes about the original.
1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp flour
4 cups water
14oz can of vegetable broth
Sliced fresh mushrooms (at least 6 big ones)
1/2 cup chopped onion
½ tsp dried crushed basil
¼ tsp salt
¼ tsp oregano
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
2 cups cheese tortellini
12oz can evaporated milk
6 handfuls of fresh baby spinach
Optional: ground black pepper, shredded parmesan cheese
Melt the butter in a 3.5 or 4 quart pot, add the flour and gradually add in the water, stirring til smooth and watching out for any potential lumps.
The original recipe called for an envelope of white sauce mix. I couldn’t find that ANYWHERE, so used the butter and flour instead.
Stir in the broth, onion, basil, salt, oregano, cayenne pepper, and mushrooms.
The original recipe called for 3 cloves of minced garlic to be added at this point. (It’s not that I’m lazy or that I don’t like garlic; it’s just that I made a silly promise to a guy that I’d give it up – that may be a story for later.)
The original recipe also called for just 1.5 cups sliced fresh mushrooms, and that’s all I used the first time. The mushrooms were SO good and added so much flavor, that, that I just bought a good sized carton the next time and used them all.
Cover and cook on very low heat for a couple hours (you’ll know when it’s done because it’s going to smell so good you don’t know how you can wait much longer, and you certainly don’t want it to reduce too much.)
I use a gas stove. You could also follow the original recipe by using a slow cooker and cooking for 5-6 hours on low or 2.5-hours on high.
Now it’s time to add the tortellini. Stir it in, cover and cook as long as directed on the package.
The original recipe called for a 7 or 8 oz package of dried tortellini. I bought the kind from the refrigerated section of the store, and used 2 cups. It took some skill to find it – it’s between the cream cheese and Jell-O at Kroger – swear! (I wouldn’t have found it without the assistance of a clerk.)
Once the tortellini is cooked, stir in the evaporated milk and the spinach. It’s going to look like WAY too much spinach, but it will shrink and wilt and trust me you’ll love it.
The original recipe called for 6 cups spinach, which I measured as carefully as I could. It wasn’t enough. The soup was better, and preparation was easier when I just grabbed 6 handfuls. I buy spinach in a rectangular plastic carton, so there’s plenty leftover for salad!
Keep it on the heat until the spinach is cooked the way you want it. You’re going to love it!