Denise says:

  • Pasta with soup is a most successful partnership as the Italians have shown us through the years.  This meal, in itself, is an ideal winter warming supper or lunch. 
  • The pesto dressing adds the final flourish to one of my personal favourite soups.


  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 large potatoes -peeled and chopped
  • 6 spring onions - trimmed and chopped
  • 1 swede or turnip - peeled and chopped
  • 1 large leek - roughly chopped
  • 2 litres - vegetable stock
  • 200ml Passata
  • 100g frozen peas
  • 100g cooked spaghetti
  • 4 plums tomatoes - peeled, deseeded and finely chopped
  • 200g baby spinach leaves
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • For the Rocket & Basil Dressing
  • 100g rocket
  • 1 clove garlic -peeled
  • 25g pinenuts - roasted
  • 50g Parmesan cheese
  • Large bunch of basil
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper


  1. Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan and sauté the potatoes, spring onions, swede or turnip, leek and garlic for 10 minutes until softened.
  2. Add the stock and Passata and bring to the boil.
  3. Simmer for 20 minutes or until the vegetables are soft.
  4. Liquidize the vegetables until smooth and return to the saucepan.
  5. Season with lots of salt and freshly ground black pepper.
  6. Sweat the chopped spinach in a covered dry pan until just soft. Drain well.
  • To make the rocket & basil Pesto Dressing (Can be made up to 2 days in advance and refrigerated)Check the seasoning.
  • Place all the ingredients, except the olive oil, in the liquidizer
  • Whizz to a thick paste.
  • Whilst the machine is running, gradually add the olive oil until the pesto is made.
  • Check seasoning. To Serve
  • Place the cooked spaghetti and frozen peas in a colander and pour over boiling water to warm through.
  • Place a large spoonful of spaghetti at the bottom of each warmed soup bowl.   Ladle in the soup followed by peas, spinach and tomatoes and topped with the pesto dressing.
  • To make a hearty meal serve with chunky Italian bread.