Monday, March 12, 2012


Last week we had Spring Break. It was a great week for Will and I to relax, spend time with friends, and get some projects done around the house. Like build a raised bed for my garden. A surprisingly easy project once you make it out of Home Depot.

We finally made it to the Jack Daniels Distillery for a tour and a picnic in the tiny town of Lynchburg, TN. If you are not familiar with Lynchburg you may be surprised to learn that it is in fact a dry county. No alcohol. Which means during your tour of the distillery you won't be served a taste of what their known for. No, instead you get lemonade. Through some loophole they created you can however purchase a bottle from their gift shop. Despite the rules on alcohol the tour was an interesting insight into how whiskey is produced and all of the steps along the way. In town we even got to try some Jack Daniels Ice Cream. Good, but it would have been better without the raisins. In fact all throughout town you can taste a variety of sauces, chocolates, etc. that have been flavored with Jack Daniels. For a dry county they sure love their alcohol.

After a long day of driving through the Tennessee country side I was ready for an easy dinner to make. Minestrone came to mind. I usually have all of the ingredients for the soup somewhere in the pantry and in the fridge. So it was decided that we would make a big batch of soup, have our friend over for dinner, and then head on over to play our weekly trivia game. It was a really great day. Plus, it was also a warm day and great weather always makes things better.


1 onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, smashed and minced
5 carrots, diced
2 potatoes, diced
3 ribs of celery, diced
1 can of tomatoes
1 small can of tomato sauce
2 zucchini, diced
1 can cannellini beans
5 cups chicken or vegetable broth
3 cups kale
Salt and pepper
Olive oil
Oregano and rosemary, to taste
1/2 lb of macaroni, cooked al dente

1) In a large dutch oven heat olive oil. Add onions, carrots, celery, potatoes, and garlic, season with salt, pepper, and herbs and let cook until slightly tender, about 15 minutes

2) Add the tomatoes, tomato sauce, zucchini, and beans, then cover with broth and let cook until vegetables are almost done, then add the kale and let cook until tender then add the macaroni and let cook together for about 5 minutes

3) Adjust seasonings then serve in bowls and enjoy!

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