Ravioli and Swiss Chard Soup

This is my variation on spinach tortellini soup. It is light, delicately flavored, and surprisingly sweet. I try to use organic vegetables whenever possible. I think organic carrots and Swiss chard are sweeter than conventionally-grown vegetables. I also like to use parsnips because they add a sweet, minty note to the soup. Use whatever greens you like, and feel free to substitute a cheese-filled pasta if you prefer. Leave the ravioli a little undercooked because the pasta becomes softer as it sits in the hot broth.

Ravioli and Swiss Chard Soup
1/4 c. extra virgin olive oil
1-1/2 c. chopped onions
3 medium carrots, peeled and diced
1 medium parsnip, peeled and diced
1 rib celery, chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1/8 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1/2 tsp. dried thyme
8 c. chicken stock
1 Tbsp. chopped Italian flat leaf parsley
4 c. chopped red Swiss chard, with a little bit of the stem
1 (1 lb. 6 oz.) pkg. frozen meat-filled ravioli (about 20 med. ravioli)

In a 5-quart pot, heat olive oil on medium heat. Add onions and sauté for 5 minutes until the onions begin to soften. Add carrots, parsnip, celery and garlic. Add salt and pepper. Sauté 5 minutes until the vegetables begin to soften. Add dried thyme and chicken stock. Cover and bring to a boil. Add parsley. Reduce heat slightly, cover and simmer for 15 minutes. Add chopped Swiss chard and simmer for 10 minutes. Add ravioli. Cover and bring back to the boil. It should only take 3 minutes. Continue cooking until ravioli rise to the surface and are tender, about 2 minutes. Turn off the heat and let soup sit for 5 minutes, then serve with grated Parmesan cheese on the side. Serves 4-6.


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