Switching from crying to laughing to thinking. That’s what happens when I read books by Shauna Niequist… She makes me feel like I’m her best friend and we are just chatting about her life experiences. If you haven’t read her books, I’d highly recommend “Bread & Wine”—cue this recipe. She calls this her “Magical White Bean Soup.” I’m a huge white bean lover, and she’s right...this soup is magical. She says, “I love food that connects us to good memories, that tells use we’re safe, that brings us back to sweeter times on hard days” (Bread & Wine, page 161). So now that it’s officially fall, which I compare to depressing, cold-weather days, I need a soup to cheer me up when the sun starts running away from me into the early evening hours. #summergirl #summerforever #ineedsun The taste is magical, but what’s also magical is how Shauna says this soup is a crowd pleaser for the red meat eater, the vegan, the diary-free and the picky eater alike. I can’t wait to add this to my list of things to share at parties or host with. For meat eaters, they can top the soup with prosciutto… For diary-free/vegans, they can drizzle with balsamic vinaigrette… for me? I topped my bowl with Asaigo cheese (Shauna recommends Parmesan) and the balsamic vin. Heavenly with a side of toasted bread and wine!
INGREDIENTS: - 2 shallots, sliced - 1/2 lb carrots, sliced into coins - 4 celery ribs, sliced on a diagonal - 3-4 rainbow chard stems (Shauna’s recipe has 1 fennel bulb, but I didn’t have that and read this can be a substitute) - 6 cans white beans in liquid (get organic!) - 2 Rosemary sprigs, finely chopped - Salt and pepper to taste - Dijon, balsamic vinegar, and olive oil (mixed together for vinaigrette) - Prosciutto, Parmesan, Asaigo cheese, and rosemary for a variety of topping options.
METHOD: (Serves 6-8) In a stockpot, soften the sliced shallots in olive oil over medium heat. Add carrots, celery, and chard stems and stir until softened. Then add the beans, WITH their liquid and chopped rosemary. Cover and cook for 20 minutes at a gentle boil. Add salt and pepper to taste. Cook for an additional 20 minutes, then turn off the heat and mash with a potato masher or the back of a wooden spoon. Sure with or without: Prosciutto, Parmesan, Asaigo cheese, and rosemary.