Don’t be intimidated by the number of ingredients in this Tuscan bean soup—it’s quite easy to make! If you decide to add pasta to the soup, choose a shape that can be easily eaten with a spoon, such as elbows, shells, or wheels.
Tuscan White Bean Soup with Leafy Green Vegetables
1 cup dried cannellini beans, cranberry beans, or navy beans, soaked overnight and drained
3 cups mixture of shredded kale, Swiss chard, and spinach
2 cups chopped leeks or yellow onions
1 cup chopped white or red potatoes
2 tbsp dry red wine
10 cups water
2 tbsp olive oil
1 cup diced celery
8 mushrooms, sliced
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 carrots, peeled and diced
3 tbsp tomato paste
1 tbsp dried basil
1 tbsp dried oregano
2 tsp dried sage
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp dried red pepper flakes
1 cup pasta (optional)
- Place the soaked dried beans and water in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 1 hour or until the beans are tender. Drain, but reserve 6 cups of cooking liquid.
- Heat the oil in a soup pot. Add the leeks, celery, and mushrooms. Sauté on medium-high heat until the vegetables are cooked and soft, about 7-10 minutes.. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds, stirring constantly. Add the beans, reserved cooking liquid, and remaining ingredients.
- Simmer for 20 minutes, uncovered, stirring occasionally. If you are using pasta, add the pasta to the soup at the 10 minute mark and cook covered. Season with salt at the end.
Yield: 6 servings
This recipe was adapted from Lean Bean Cuisine: Over 100 Tasty Meatless Recipes from Around the World.