Note to Self:

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Tuscan-Style White Bean Soup

This full-flavored and nutritious soup is so easy to make and hearty enough to be a full meal (with some good bread, of course). In fact, it is so hearty if you add pasta to it (especially ditalini) and some Parmesan cheese you'll have a sort of Pasta e Fagioli. Here it is in pictures; a recipe follows.

Tuscan-Style White Bean Soup

Makes about 6 quarts
1 ½ pounds dried white beans
3 tablespoon olive oil
1 cup diced ham
1 red pepper diced
1 small onion, diced
2 ribs celery, diced
2 carrots, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon crushed hot pepper
1 teaspoon fennel seed
1 teaspoon rosemary
1 teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon black pepper
4 tomatoes, diced
4 quarts chicken broth

Soak the beans in water overnight, or at least 1 hour. Heat the olive oil in a heavy pot and sauté the ham, pepper, onion, celery, carrot, garlic, hot pepper, fennel, and rosemary for about five minutes. Add the beans, salt, black pepper, tomatoes and broth. Bring the soup to a boil then lower it to a simmer. Cook the beans for about 90 minutes, or until the beans are very tender. If too much liquid evaporates, add more stock or water as needed.

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