Hearty soup has Italian flair

This soup, appropriately names Taste Like Lasagna Soup, is great as fall approaches.

This soup, appropriately names Taste Like Lasagna Soup, is great as fall approaches.

Robin McDaniel is a community columnist for Blount Today and writes the weekly column - In The Kitchen. Every week she prepares or collaborates on a recipe then cooks and photographs the dish for Blount Today. Robin must consider it a labor of love. You can certainly see the love and care she puts into In the Kitchen each week.

Looking at the Foodnetwork site again, I ran across this recipe from Paula Deen. I love lasagna and also soup, so this was a perfect fit. Prepare this before going to your next football game and keep the recipe handy as fall approaches. It’s hearty, filling and delicious.

Taste Like Lasagna Soup

1 lb. ground chuck

1 onion, chopped

1 green pepper, chopped

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 tsp. thyme

1 T. firmly packed brown sugar

1 (32 oz.) box chicken broth

2 (14.5 oz.) cans petite diced tomatoes

1 (15 oz.) an tomato sauce

2 tsp.. Italian seasoning

1/2 tsp. salt

2 cups broken lasagna noodles

1 (5 oz.) pkg. grated Parmesan cheese

2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

Garlic Crostini

1 thin French baguette

1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil

2 cloves smashed garlic

salt and pepper

In large Dutch oven, combine ground chuck, onion, bell pepper and garlic. Cook over medium-high heat for 8 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally until beef is browned and crumbles. Drain well.

Stir in thyme, brown sugar, broth, diced tomatoes, tomato sauce Italian seasoning and salt.

Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, reduce heat and simmer 20 minutes. Add noodles, and simmer until noodles are tender. Stir in Parmesan cheese.

Preheat broiler. Ladle soup into 8 to 10 oven proof bowls. Evenly sprinkle with mozzarella cheese.

Broil soups, 6-inches from heat 3 to 4 minutes, until cheese is browned and bubbly.

Add a garlic crostini slice on top. Serve immediately.

For the Garlic Crostini:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cut bread into 1/4 inch round slices. Place on baking sheet and brush each slice with olive oil.

Season with salt and pepper, place in oven and bake until golden and crisp, abut 15 minutes.

Remove from oven and let cool slightly. Rub each side with smashed garlic cloves.

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