Mermaids of the Lake

{Garbanzo Bean Soup}


1 large onion, chopped
4 celery ribs, sliced
2 carrots, peeled and thinly sliced
2½ cups chopped green cabbage
2 medium potatoes, peeled and cut into ½-inch cubes
1 14½-ounce can diced and peeled tomatoes, drained
1 medium zucchini, diced
1 cup dried garbanzo beans (chick peas), rinsed, drained and picked over
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 teaspoons dried basil
1 bay leaf
½ teaspoon dried rosemary, crushed
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pepper
3 14½-ounce cans vegetable broth
8 ounces fresh spinach, chopped
¾ cup shredded or grated Parmesan cheese

In a slow cooker, mix together onion, celery, carrots, cabbage, potatoes, tomatoes, zucchini, garbanzo beans, garlic, basil, bay leaf, rosemary, salt, pepper, and vegetable broth. Cover and cook on Low about 8 hours, or until the beans are tender. Remove the bay leaf. Stir in spinach. Heat 10 to 15 minutes longer. Serve in soup bowls, topped with a generous sprinkling of cheese.