Thursday, January 17, 2013

Recipe (Re)creation: White Bean + Vegetable Soup with Pesto

This white bean + vegetable soup is the perfect antidote to the winter blues.  The recipe makes a decent quantity so it's well worth the effort.  I based it on this lovely recipe by Heidi Swanson, but adapted it to my own tastes.  I used chicken broth for added flavor and used kale since I had it on hand and happen to love it in soups.  Lastly, I sprinkled the top with shaved parmesan which melted perfectly and blended well with the pesto.  I served the soup with toasted english muffins topped with pesto and melted parmesan.  They tasted like healthy mini pesto pizzas and were perfect vessels for dipping in the soup.   This recipe will give you the perfect excuse to stay inside, warm up, and stir away all your troubles.

Serves 6-8

  • 12 oz. canned cannellini beans
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 3 medium leeks, trimmed and chopped
  • 4 stalks celery, chopped
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 28-ounce can tomatoes, chopped and drained 
  • 3 small zucchini, chopped
  • 1/2 cup kale, roughly chopped
  • 2 teaspoons salt, or to taste
  • 1/4 cup pesto
  • 1/4 cup shaved parmesan (optional)


-In a large soup pot, heat the oil on medium heat.
-Next, sauté the onion, leeks, celery and zucchini for about 5-7 minutes.
-Pour in the water and chicken broth and add the beans.
-Bring to a boil, then simmer for 15 minutes.
-Add the chopped tomatoes and cook for another 15 minutes.
-Lastly, add the kale and continue cooking for another 5 minutes.
-Add salt to taste and ladle into soup bowls.
-Top with a generous dallop of pesto and sprinkle with shaved parmesan.


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