So, Daylight Savings happened last night which means Spring will be here soon, right? C’mon Spring…hurry up! Until that happens, I’m still in full hibernation mode surrounded by the comforts of home and enjoying a bit of a soup kick these days.
One of my favourites is this hearty but light Tuscan White Bean soup. I made this as a fully vegan recipe for a couple of vegan friends, but I’ve also made this with chicken broth instead of the veggie option and added small turkey or pork meatballs for a heartier meal.
TIP: this soup is actually better a day or two after it’s made, as the potatoes and beans start breaking down and lend a natural creaminess to the broth without adding any dairy
- 4 cups Swiss chard
- 2 x 540 mL cans cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 3 sprigs fresh thyme
- 2 sage leaves
- 1 small onion
- 3 cloves garlic
- 2 medium Yukon gold potatoes
- 1 medium leek
- 2 litres vegetable stock (low sodium if you can find it)
- 2 cups water
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 tsp pepper
- Wash Swiss chard and the leek thoroughly as they can often carry a lot of sand. Chop the chard into 1-inch pieces including the stalks. Remove the root end and tough green part of the leek and slice in half lengthwise – check inside for any lingering soil – and slice thinly
- Chop the potato into ½-inch chunks. Yukon gold potatoes have a very thin skin so you don’t need to peel them
- In a large soup pot, heat olive oil over medium-low heat. While the oil is heating up, finely chop the onion and garlic
- Add the onion and leek to the oil and sauté for 3 – 4 minutes until translucent and slightly golden. Add the garlic and sauté for 1 – 2 minutes careful not to overdo it or the garlic will become bitter
- Next, add the chopped chard, potatoes and beans to the pot. Cover with the stock and water and season with salt and pepper.
- With a piece of cotton kitchen twine, tie the thyme sprigs and sage leaves into a little bundle and add to the broth. This makes it easy to remove when the soup is cooked, so you’re not fishing around for loose leaves in the pot.
- Bring to a boil then reduce heat to a simmer and cook for approximately 45 minutes. Adjust salt and pepper seasoning to taste
- Serve with a piece of crusty Italian bread rubbed with a garlic clove or drizzled with a touch of extra virgin olive oil