CANNELLINI BEANS AND ESCAROLE SOUP
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cooking: 15 minutes
With a combination of vegetables and beans, this soup is very healthy and nutritious. It is also a great dish for special occasions when your guests discover the surprise at the bottom of their bowl… a toasted slice of a good country bread rubbed with a lot of garlic!
3 large escarole (about 2 ½ lbs)
500 gr / 1 lb cannellini beans
1 stick of celery, diced
1 medium onion
1 carrot, diced
6-7 cherry tomatoes, quartered
3 garlic cloves, 2 peeled and crushed
5-8 slices of toasted country bread, gluten-free if needed
120 ml / ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp dried red pepper flakes
Salt & pepper
Soak the cannellini beans overnight in cold water. Wash and drain the cannellini beans and put them in a pressure cooker with the celery, carrot, onion (cut in half), 2 garlic cloves and enough water to cover them (about 3-4 inches). Cook at a medium heat for about 45 minutes, or about 1 hour if using a regular stove pan. While the beans are cooking, sauté the garlic and dried red pepper flakes in extra virgin olive oil.If you are not vegetarian, you can add some bacon to the sauté to add extra flavor. Add this sauté to the beans once they are cooked.
Discard the outer leaves of the escarole and wash them. Boil the water, then add salt once it’s boiling. Put the escarole in the boiling water for 3-5 minutes with the lid on. Then, turn heat off but leave escarole in the covered pot until soft but not mushy. Drain the escarole, cut the bottoms and coarsely chopped them.
Puree some of cannellini beans with a handheld blender, unless some beans are already broken up. Add the coarsely chopped escarole to the beans and cook for about 15 minutes. Stir in the cherry tomatoes.
Toast the bread, rub each slice with garlic and place a slice at the bottom of each individual bowl. Drizzle each portion of the bread with extra virgin olive oil and pour the bean soup on top of the bread. Season with salt, pepper and more extra virgin olive olive oil before serving.
March 20, 2017
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