Here are the notes from last week. I was planning to make a
full Sunday Dinner, but only four people were going to be there
(again!). Joe and AnnMarie were still unpacking from their
move, but they were planning to order Chinese food and watch
the Braves-Cardinals playoff game so they invited us up there.
Since I'd already bought stuff to make soup, and it was easy
enough to bring along, that's what I did.

I already had some vegetable stock that I'd made the day before
that I was planning to use for risotto, but since risotto was
off the menu, I used the stock for the soup. I made the stock
in the pressure cooker. It's a ten quart model. I filled it
half way with assorted vegetables, cut up, that had been
sitting in my refrigerator: about six carrots, half a bunch of
celery, half a bunch of parsley, a leek, one and a half onions,
one and a half tomatoes, and half a cucumber. To this I added
a teaspoon of dried thyme, a bay leaf, a crushed clove of
garlic, and a teaspoon of whole black pepper. I filled the pot
with water to the "max" line and put it on the stove. When it
started boiling, I locked down the lid, and when it reached
pressure after about ten minutes, I turned down the heat and
let it cook away. After twenty minutes I took it off the stove
and let it cool down and drop pressure for another twenty
minutes. Then I took the lid off, strained the stock, and put
it in the refrigerator to cool. It took about an hour from
start to finish.

The soup I made was also a pressure cooker recipe, from the
book _Cooking Under Pressure_ by Lorna Sass. It's really
excellent Minestrone. I don't know how to convert it to
non-pressure cooker, but here it is anyway:

3/4 cup dried navy beans
3 Tbsp olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 large onion, coarsley chopped
3 carrots, 1/2 inch slices
1 medium leek, thinly sliced
3 stalks celery, 1 inch slices
1 cup tightly packed basil or Italian parsley
1 tsp dried thyme or oregano
1 14 oz can Italian plum tomatoes with juice
3 cups water
3 cups vegetable stock
6 oz green beans cut in thirds
1/2 cup orzo
2 large zucchini, 1/2 inch slices
3 cups loosely packed shredded cabbage
1 tsp salt
Fresh ground pepper
Parmesan cheese

Soak beans, rinse, drain. Saute garlic and onion in the
pressure cooker in olive oil until limp. Add carrots, leek,
celery, half the basil, thyme, beans, tomatoes with juice,
water and stock. Lock lid and bring to high pressure, cook for
20 minutes. Release pressure, or cool under running water and
remove lid. Add green beans and orzo and cook over medium heat
for five minutes, stirring so orzo doesn't sink and burn. Add
zucchini, cabbage, remaining basil, salt and pepper and cook
until zucchini and green beans are tender, about five minutes.
Serve with parmesan.


I multiplied the whole thing by one and a half, except the
tomatoes, which I doubled. It made a lot of leftovers. There
was about 7-8 quarts of soup to go with the chinese food. I
think it could have fed the six of us without anything else. I
used all stock and no water. I used a combination of basil and
regular curled parsley. I used both thyme and oregano

I filled the pot with the first stuff and took it over to Joe
and AnnMarie's and cooked it there. I carried the other stuff
over in tupperware and added it at the end and everything came
out perfect.

Get a pressure cooker. You'll love it.