Nothing beats a hearty, soothing, and nourishing bean soup on a cold winter evening – except a bean soup which comes together in a jiffy. And that’s exactly what this white beans & kale soup does.
40 minutes from start to finish. And your active working time is half that time.
This is of course only possible when using already cooked beans. For this recipe you can use commercially precooked beans – in which case you should look for beans packaged in glass or food cartons instead of cans to minimize your exposure to the potentially damaging chemical bisphenol A – or beans you have cooked yourself beforehand. If you’d like to cook your own you can follow this simple recipe. If you use commercially packaged beans remember to rinse them well to get rid of most of the sodium. Using un-rinsed beans may give you a very salty dish.
As for the kale, I am myself partial to Tuscan kale, also know as palm leaf kale, but if you prefer the curly type of kale then go ahead and use that instead. And if kale is nowhere to be found then you can use savoy cabbage, watercress, arugula, or even spinach in a pinch.
White Beans & Kale Soup
- 2 shallots, diced
- 1 yellow onion, diced
- 2 carrots, peeled and sliced into 1/4 inch (1/2-1 cm) thick rounds
- 2-4 garlic cloves, minced
- 3 celery stalks, sliced like the carrots
- 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
- 3 cups vegetable stock
- 3 bay leaves
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/4 teaspoon chili flakes
- 1/2 cup nutritional yeast
- 2-3 cups already cooked white beans (1 cup dried) I usually use Great Northern, navy, or cannellini beans for this recipe.
- Salt & pepper to taste
- 200 g Tuscan kale, washed and roughly chopped (Tuscan kale is also known as palm leaf kale)
- Heat the olive oil in a large pot and sauté the onions, carrots, garlic, and celery for a few minutes.
- Add the stock, bay leaves, smoked paprika, thyme, and chili flakes and simmer for about 20 minutes until the carrots have softened and the flavors have had a chance to develop.
- Add the cooked beans and the nutritional yeast and then season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Now take about 1 ½ cups of the bean soup, – the liquid, beans, and vegetables – and blend to a smooth puree. Add this puree back into the soup and bring the whole thing back to a simmer.
- Add the chopped kale and simmer for another minute or two until the kale has wilted.
- Adjust seasoning to taste and serve.