hearty vegan basil tomato soup with pasta

 I got this idea originally from here. Obviously, I had to find a way to veganize it, though, since I don't eat meat or cheese. Simply omitting those ingredients was a success in my book, but it just didn't feel right calling it "lasagna soup" anymore, since it didn't really remind me of lasagna when I was eating it.
 But it was still yummy :)
Here's what I did:

3 garlic cloves, chopped
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
1 pint baby portobello mushrooms, chopped
1 Italian pepper, finely chopped
2-3 vine tomatoes, chopped (optional, I just had some to use up)
1 cup of fresh basil, chopped (plus a few extra leaves for garnish, if desired)
2 28 oz cans of crushed tomatoes (I used one regular and one fire roasted)
28 oz of water
1-2 Tbsp coconut or safflower oil
1-2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
salt & pepper, to taste
2-3 cups dry pasta (I used spirals, which I think work best)

In a medium pot, set water boiling for your pasta and cook according to package directions until al dente.

While pasta water is heating, in a large pot, heat your coconut oil over medium heat. Once hot, add your garlic, onion, mushrooms and Italian pepper and turn the heat up to medium high. Saute, covered, until mushrooms have released their moisture and onions have begun to turn translucent.

Add your fresh tomatoes, basil, crushed tomatoes, water, olive oil and salt & pepper. Once pasta is finished cooking, drain and rinse under cold water and add to the soup pot. Allow to simmer for 15-20 minutes on medium low. This will allow the flavors to meld.

Serve hot.

This makes a lot. 6-8 servings, I would say. Unless you're feeding a 6 1/2 foot tall man, in which case it is about four. I have strong feelings about overeating and this soup sparked a huge controversy in my weird world.

So be warned, it is delicious and should not be left unattended.


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