Creating recipes isn't a pastime—it's a passion. And a lot of fun.

The rules are few: Use 99% fresh ingredients (or thereabouts); make the dish simple but flavorful; make the dish flavorful but simple; be creative, not silly.

With this blog, I want to share new recipes, along with tips on ingredients and preparation, and, hopefully, show new cooks (and non-cooks) the pleasure in setting the table with a delicious homemade meal. The Briny Lemon is about fresh, simple, flavorful ingredients and easy cooking methods that help you bring the best to your family table. Your comments are welcome!

Friday, August 1, 2014

Summer Vegetable Minestrone

Recipe updated August 2015

Eating seasonal foods is a good thing, but the time of year doesn’t need to dictate what dish is on the dinner table. Grill out in winter, eat soup in summer—it’s all about enjoying the flavors of the moment.

When I make minestrone during cold months, it’s typically rich, meaty, and loaded with delicious root vegetables. But this is August. And the minestrone in this recipe is loaded with the light, airy, and inviting tastes of summer—zucchini and yellow squash, scallions, fresh corn, tomatoes, and herbs.

A little pasta and creamy cannellini beans round it out, keeping the dish light but very satisfying—and on the table in less than 30 minutes.

Minestrone Ingredients 
Spring vegetables make delicious soup in summertime too. Check out Chicken Minestrone with Spring Vegetables.

Serves 4-5

  • 1 large ear of corn, husked, silk removed
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 4 scallions cut crosswise into 1/2-inch pieces (white and light green parts only)
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 medium zucchini, chopped
  • 1 medium yellow squash, chopped
  • 2 large stem tomatoes, chopped
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup dry elbow macaroni
  • 1 15-oz can cannellini (or great northern) beans, rinsed and drained
  • chopped fresh herbs (such as basil, chives, oregano, and parsley), for garnish
Prepared Vegetables
  1. Stand the ear of corn in a shallow bowl and use a knife to gently scrape down the sides, removing the kernels from the cob.
  2. Heat a large pot over medium heat and add the olive oil. Add the scallions, garlic, zucchini, and yellow squash and cook, stirring frequently, 3 minutes.
  3. Add the tomatoes, corn kernels, and vegetable broth and season with salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer, then reduce the heat to low, cover, and cook gently 15 minutes.
  4. Increase the heat to medium and bring to a simmer again. Add the macaroni and beans and simmer until the pasta is tender, 7-8 minutes.
Cut the Kernels from the Corn
Scallion Mixture Beginning to Cook 
Corn and Tomatoes Added
Broth Added 
Cooked Minestrone
To serve, divide the minestrone among 4-5 shallow bowls and garnish with chopped fresh herbs.

Summer Vegetable Minestrone


  1. This looks delicious. Thanks for sharing at What'd You Do This Weekend.