White Bean and Black Olive Soup
(from Cooking Light
1 c dry white beans
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 1/4 c chopped onion
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 c diced celery
1/2 c diced carrot
1/2 c chopped red bell pepper
1/3 c tomato paste
1/4 c dry red wine
2 c vegetable broth
2 c water
1 c chopped zucchini
2 c sliced escarole***
3/4 sliced pitted kalamata olives
1/4 c chopped parsley
2 TBSP chopped fresh or 2 tsp dried basil
1 TBSP fresh lemon juice
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp fresh ground black pepper
1. Sort and wash beans, place in a large saucepan. Cover with water to 2 inches about beans, bring to a boil. Cook 2 minutes; remove from heat. Cover and let stand 1 hour. Drain beans.
2. Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic; saute 5 minutes or until lightly browned. Add celery, carrot, and bell pepper; saute 10 minutes. Add tomato paste; cook 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Stir in wine, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Add borth and water to pan; stir well. Add beans; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer 1.5 hours or until beans are tender.
3. Stir in zucchini; cook 5 minutes. Add escarole and remaining ingredients; stir well. Yield 7 servings (serving size: 1 cup). 3 pts per cup.
Calories 183; fat 3.7g; protein 9g; carb 30g; fiber 10g; chol 0.7mg; iron 3.7mg; sodium 860mg; calc 100mg.
Chef's notes First of all, the (***) on the escarole--I tried to find this but couldn't at the grocery store, so I looked it up at Cook's Thesaurus (www.foodsub.com
), and found I could use spinach instead, so I did. Also, when browning the onions/garlic, my pan bottom was brown WAAAY before 5 minutes, and I turned my pan down, and got even browner when I added the celery, carrots and bell pepper, so I shortened both times by at least half. For the carrots, I cooked until they were no longer crunchy. I also didn't cook 5 minutes after adding the tomato paste. However, the flavor of the soup comes from that browning process, so you DO NEED some browning sticking to the bottom of the pan, but if it gets too dark brown or black, it WILL ruin it. The red wine is an important step...it helps scrape up the brown bits and that's where the excellent color (and flavor) comes from.
If you don't want to mess with dried beans, used a two cans of canned northern or navy beans. Just make sure to drain them AND rinse them well, to reduce the sodium content. Yeacccch!
The oil is very important as it helps released the oils from both onions and garlic, so don't skimp there (and it's so little anyway).
If you can't find kalamata olives (try the olive bar at the supermarket) use GREEN olives rather than BLACK--the flavor is more similar.
And if at ALL possible, try to get fresh parsley and basil. I didn't have fresh basil--it turned out excellent anyway, but our grocery store gives a free bunch of parsley with any produce purchase and the flavor is incomparable vs. dried parsley.
Very filling soup!!! Lurve it!!!