Tuscan White Bean Soup

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I love making soups and obviously that means I also love to eat them.  Apart from being a great comfort food, they can be easy to put together and it’s often a great way to camouflage a stack of vegetables from fussy children. The finer you blend your soup, the harder it is to detect what vegetables went into it.  The main problem I have with soup is that I always make way too much.  This is a good thing though because it freezes easily, and it’s wonderful to have on hand when you just can’t be bothered cooking after a tiring day at work.

Tuscan White Bean Soup e

  • 2 cans cannellini beans
  • 2 cans white spanish beans
  • 150g diced pancetta
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 4 carrots, chopped in small cubes
  • 5 celery ribs, chopped in same size as carrots
  • 125ml fresh tomato pulp.
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 3 litres Vegetable broth
  • 500ml water (extra & optional)
  • 10 hand torn basil leaves (keeping some aside for garnish)
  • pecorino romano
  • black pepper
  1. In a large saucpean add the pancetta and allow to cook until golden, stirring frequently as it cooks. Add olive oil, onions and garlic, and cook over a medium heat.  Stir for about a minute, and then add the carrots and celery and continue to cook for 5 minutes.
  2. Stir in the tomatoes and basil and stir for about 3 minutes.
  3. Drain all the beans in a colander, add to the saucepan and add the vegetable broth.  Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer, allow to cook for 45minutes.  Taste and season as required.
  4. Remove a cup of the beans and blend the remaining soup until it is the consistency you are happy with.  You might prefer a chunkier soup, or you might like it like a velvet purèe.  Add the water only if necessary, the soup should be thick and creamy.
  5. Add the cup of beans back to soup and serve with freshly grated Pecorino Romano cheese, a drizzle of olive oil and freshly cracked black pepper. Add a small basil leaf to garnish.
  6. For a vegetarian version, eliminate the pancetta. d