Winter is the time for soup! And hearty ones like this White Bean Escarole Soup. Not only is soup a great way to start a meal if you are dieting, since the liquid can be filling, but this soup can become a meal unto itself because bean are a great source of protein. Let me just remind you that beans are a great source of fiber, so if you are trying to eat healthy you should check out this recipe. This soup is really versatile and by swapping out chicken broth for veggie stock or water, this recipe works for vegans as well.
If you don't have time to cook your own bean (and who really does these days), make sure to buy low sodium beans.
To see the recipe just read more
The recipe calls for escarole, but you can substitute any green - spinach, kale, chard, collards - or a combination. You can use canned white beans (2 15-oz. cans, rinsed thoroughly) or dried beans (start with 1-1/2 cups). This recipe serves 4 to 6
What you need:
1 Tbs. Olive oil
2 cups chopped onion
2 bay leaves
5 stalks celery, minced
5 medium carrots, diced
2 tsp. Salt (or to taste)
4 cups chicken or vegetable stock
2 cups water
3 to 4 cups cooked white beans
6 cloves minced garlic
1-1/2 lbs. Escarole, torn into 1 inch squares
fresh black pepper to taste
toppings: freshly grated nutmeg, minced parsley, Parmesan cheese
What you do:
- Heat the oil in a soup pot or Dutch oven; add the onion, bay leaves, celery, carrots, and salt. Cook over low heat for about 10 minuets.
- Add stock and water. Cover, bring to a boil, lower the heat to a simmer, and cook quietly for about 20 minutes, or until the vegetables are very tender.
- Add beans, garlic, and as much of the escarole as you can fit. Cover and wait a few minutes. When there is room, add more escarole in batches, waiting between additions for the greens to cook down. Cook for about 10 minutes.
- Add black pepper to taste then Serve hot, topped with a grating of fresh nutmeg, a little parsley, and a generous sprinkling of Parmesan cheese.
I always like to eat soup with a piece of crusty multi-grain bread.
If you are vegan, just omit the Parmesan garnish and use chopped flat leaf parsley or a little freshly ground nutmeg instead.