Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Tuscan Bean Soup, the Happiest Soup Ever

I've been making this soup for years. I don't remember when exactly, but a friend gave me the Food for Friends as a gift. I have a lot of cookbooks, but this is one that stays in the kitchen because there are some definite keepers in here, recipes that I come back to again and again, tweaking them here and there; adding this, trying that.

This is absolutely one of those recipes. It's delicious in its simplicity and so easy to adapt based on what you may have in the pantry. When the crisp fall air comes to visit, here's just something so comforting about soup, and this soup in particular.

If you have it on hand, this is also really good with thin curls of Parmesan on top. But cheese makes everything that much happier, doesn't it?

Tuscan Bean Soup, adapted from Food for Friends
Serves 6
1 T olive oil
4 oz pancetta
1 onion, diced
1 garlic clove, diced
2 carrots, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
1 can cannelini beans, rinsed
4 Italian sausages
1 quart chicken stock
1 bay leaf
bunch of parsley, chopped
salt and pepper

  1. Heat a large dutch oven over medium heat; add olive oil, carrots, celery, garlic, pancetta, and onions. Saute over medium heat 8-10 minutes, until softened.
  2. Add the beans, sausage, stock, and bay leaf. Bring to a boil, cover, and simmer 30 minutes.
  3. Remove the sausages from the soup and slice on the diagonal. Return the sausages and their juices to the soup.
  4. Add the parsley, remove the bay leaf, and serve.

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