Breezy Bean Soup

A delightful kidney -and Cannellini bean soup, served with vegetables and a choice of pancetta, bacon or ham. Perfect for those cold winter days.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup kidney beans soaked overnight, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 cup cannellini beans soaked overnight, drained and rinsed
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for drizzling on bread
  • 1/2 pound diced pancetta, bacon or ham
  • 2 cups diced onions
  • 1 cup diced celery
  • 1 cup diced carrots
  • 4 cloves garlic, sliced
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 can diced tomatoes
  • 1 can chick peas, drained and rinsed
  • 2 quarts chicken stock, plus extra water if needed
  • 2 sprigs rosemary
  • 3 sprigs thyme
  • 1 sprig oregano
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon red chilli flakes
  • 2 heads Lacinata kale (optional), stems removed and cut into bite size pieces
  • 1 loaf Italian peasant bread, cut into thick slices
  • Parmigiano-Reggiano, grated, for serving

Method

  • Place the beans in a medium pot, add water to cover and bring to a boil.
  • Turn the heat down, let simmer for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until just-tender.
  • In a large soup pot, gently heat the olive oil over medium heat.
  • Add the pancetta, bacon or ham rendering the fat and cooking until slightly crispy (about 3 minutes).
  • Saute the onion, celery, carrot and garlic for 3 to 4 minutes.
  • Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste.
  • Add the diced tomatoes, the cooked and drained kidney beans, cannellini beans, chick peas, and the chicken stock.
  • Add the herbs and the bay leaf to the pot.
  • Season with the red chilli flakes, salt and pepper.
  • Cook for 15 to 20 minutes, then add the kale.
  • Continue cooking until the beans are completely tender.

To Assemble

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  • Drizzle olive oil over the slices of peasant bread, season with a little salt and pepper and toast in the oven.
  • Serve the soup in large bowls with grated Parmesan and a slice of toast.

Enjoy with Wedderwill 17ºC red blend or Syrah.


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