White Bean and Kale Soup
by Beth Merrill-Belval
This hearty, clean-eating, vegan and gluten-free soup is just the ticket to warm you up on these cold winter nights! Throw all the ingredients into a crock pot on low, or make on the stove top!
- Olive oil to liberally coat the pan
- 4 celery stalks, chopped
- 3 medium carrots, chopped or diced
- 3-4 small potatoes, chopped or diced
- 1 medium onion, diced or chopped
- 5 cloves garlic, sliced or chopped
- 2 tsp dried rosemary
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp dried thyme
- 1 15 oz. can diced tomatoes, undrained
- 1 15 oz. can white kidney beans (aka cannellini beans), rinsed
- 4 cups broth
- 1-2 cups water (or as needed)
- Bunch of kale, ribbed and coarsely chopped
- Juice of half a lemon (if desired)
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Parmesan cheese
- Italian sausage or ground turkey
- Croutons/toasted bread
Coat the bottom of a large stock pot with olive oil. Put on medium high heat. Once the pan has heated up… you can throw some drops of water into the pan to be sure; if it sizzles, it’s time… Add the celery, carrots, potatoes, onion and garlic. Stir. Add some more olive oil if you need to, to coat the vegetables. Add rosemary, oregano, thyme. (Note: Crush the dried herbs in your palm before adding to release the flavors.) Salt and pepper to taste. Cook for about five minutes. (Note: How long you choose to cook them together doesn’t matter much, since everything will be simmered together anyway. I like to get them to a point where it becomes aromatic.) Add broth. You can fiddle with the amount of water you want to add depending on how brothy you want your soup. If you use low-sodium broth, now would be a good time to taste it to bring up the salt level, if you wish. Bring to a boil, cover, and simmer for about 15 minutes. Add the beans and kale. A bit of lemon juice at this point might also be in order. Give the soup a taste and see what you think! Simmer for another 5-10 minutes.
Grate or slice some parmesan for a finishing touch.
If you want to add sausage, slice it up, throw it in a pan to cook first, then add towards the end. Remember if you do this, it’ll kick up the oil and salt levels in your finished soup.
I chose to drink this with a Chablis. Chablis is located in the Burgundy region of France and is 100% chardonnay. The way Chablis is made and the soil in which it’s grown is very different from, say, a Napa Valley chardonnay, so it tastes different. A Chablis has more minerality, is less fruity, and higher in acidity. If you’ve turned off chardonnay, I encourage you to try Chablis. I found a great one at Trader Joe’s.