Tuscan Bean Soup

This is another one of those recipes that got lost in the move. It’s one of my oldest and most favorite soup recipes, and I think it deserves a spot right up front!

And by old I mean eight years. This isn’t an heirloom recipe, but it should be.

 One of the reasons I love this soup is because it’ll please just about anyone. It’s relatively healthy, gluten-free, and if you don’t add a sprinkle of Parmesan at the end it’s even dairy-free. It has a hearty, almost-creamy texture from the pureed beans. Such a great technique if you’re cream-phobic… which I’m not. Most of the time.

Plus it tastes great. This soup has SO much flavor. It surprises me every time.

Tuscan Bean Soup

Yield: 6 servings

Ingredients:

2 cans white beans, drained (Cannellini or Great Northern)

1 c. onion, chopped

3 medium carrots, diced

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 tablespoons olive oil

8 ounces deli ham, chopped (preferably uncured)

3 c. chicken broth, divided

½ teaspoon dried thyme

½ teaspoon dried marjoram

½ teaspoon dried rosemary

⅛ teaspoon black pepper

⅛ teaspoon crushed red pepper

1 cup Italian diced tomatoes

Salt, to taste


Directions:

Saute onion, carrots and garlic in oil in a large saucepan until onions are lightly browned, 5-8 min. Add ham and saute 2 minutes longer. Add 2 cups broth, herbs and peppers.


Process 1 ½ c beans and remaining 1 c broth in blender or food processor until smooth; add to soup and heat to boiling. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, 35-45 minutes, stirring frequently. Add remaining beans and tomatoes with liquid; simmer 10 minutes more. Season to taste with salt.


from 1001 Low-Fat Soups and Stews by Sue Spitler and Linda R. Yoakam