All content copyright Katrina Hall 2008 through 2018

Thursday, October 8, 2009

tuscan vegetable soup with white beans and garlic

These have been perfect soup days lately - chilly in the mornings and crisp in the afternoon for foliage peeping. This morning I was making my favorite tuscan vegetable soup when the treemen showed up to clear the ice storm debris in the field, so I took out two bowls of warm soup, heady with tarragon and basil, with a last minute garnish of white beans and garlic. I hesitated for a second, holding my breath as I handed the bowls to them, but heaved a sigh when they inhaled the herby steam and started eating. Two nods, so I think it passed the test.
At the last minute, as the soup was bubbling and simmering, a bowl of white beans in the fridge caught my eye. Heated up with a little olive oil and lots of garlic, it made a really nice garnish for that delightful soup. Matchsticks of prosciutto crossed my mind as the soup was nearing the end of cooking, but I had none. If you try prosciutto, let me know if it adds a little something to the already wonderful soup.
This soup freezes really well!
To make:
2 T. olive oil
1 T. unsalted butter
4 stalks of celery, washed and sliced
1 large onion, roughly chopped
4 carrots, peeled and grated
1 28 oz. can plum tomatoes in juice, diced , and the juice from the can
2 cups light chicken or vegetable stock
1/2 t. basil
1/2 t. thyme
1/2 t. oregano
2 t. dried tarragon
salt and freshly cracked pepper
Place olive oil and butter in a large , heavy bottomed pot. Heat, and add the onions, carrots and celery and braise, covered on medium heat, for about 20 minutes.
Add the tomatoes, the juice from the tomatoes, the chicken stock and all the herbs, along with salt and pepper. Let simmer for 20 minutes, take off heat, and stir in a little more basil and tarragon. Taste for salt and pepper and add if desired.
White bean garnish:
Warm one cup cooked, drained white beans. ( Great Northern, cannelini)
Gently stir in 2 T. olive oil, then 3 cloves pressed garlic.
Cook a few minutes more, then add salt, pepper, and or/ minced parsley, as wished.
Serve with a great crusty bread and a bowl of parmesan curls.


Martha said...

Love vegetable soup but usually we have beans in rather than beans to garnish -- I could smell it through the screen -- it looked so good!

Patty said...

Wow! I just visited your about page and am thoroughly impressed! Between raising two kids and all the other incredible things you do, how do you have time to eat, much less write your gorgeous blog? I enjoy vegetable soups as well and will definitely try this also a sucker for a little crispy pork, so will let you know! Thanks for the recipe!

katrina said...

Well, Martha - I've been making quite a few bean soups lately, and thought I'd have the strongly garlicy bean&garlic as a garnish, probably because I'm a little tired of bean soup! Loved it! I can see the white beans on the crusty bread as a kind of bruschetta as well. I'm so delighted you approved!

katrina said...

Hi Patty! The kids are now grown and on their own - and although those days were whirlwinds, I do miss the craziness. Takes some getting used to not to be crazy-busy all the time. Now I'm just *busy* and have no idea where time goes.
Ummmmm, that pork, whether bacon or prosciutto, does sound awfully good - keep me posted!

Michelle said...

What a sweet gesture to offer some food to the tree crew! We just finished a huge construction project on our home and I sort of miss having the guys around. I bake more then we can eat and it sure helped with their hearty appetites!

katrina said...

Hey, Michelle!
I know what you mean:) Love sharing leftovers and overruns with the plowman in the winter, and the treemen in the fall, as well as the sometime carpenters and winter roof people. And I know they love the treats, so it's a perfect arrangement. I do notice a definite lean toward the sweets, however, so I'm very grateful the guys today enjoyed the healthy stuff, as well.

Velva said...

Fall has officially arrived with that splendid soup as proof! I have your soup recipe saved! Thanks.

Wow, I cannot believe that you have already clearing debris from an ice storm. It is still 90 degrees and humid, humid, humid here in North Florida (ugh).

lululu said...

oh, it's very nice of you! who wouldnt want to be in your neighborhood!

katrina said...

Velva, so glad you enjoyed this wonderful soup! The ice storm I refer to happened last December. The field in front of the house was still full of branches and a few trees needed to be cut down.

katrina said...

lululu -you have no idea how much I love feeding people! Some peculiar primal urge to share, no doubt...

kellypea said...

Definitely a beautiful and yummy sounding Fall soup. I just may put a different spin on the soup I was planning on this evening. This really sounds perfect.

katrina said...

Ooooo, what were you planning? Got to say I LOVE this soup, and especially love the beans as a topping/garnish, rather than just plunked in the soup. Totally different taste, and loved the hit of garlic. Glad you enjoyed, Kelly!