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Recipe Club: Molly’s Tuscan Bean Soup

October 18th, 2006

This one is from Zipdodah. Thank you!

Makes 8 servings

I took everything I liked best out of all the bean soup recipes I’ve tried over the years to come up with the following sophisticated and surprisingly spring-like dish. It tastes lighter than you’d expect, and can be adapted for vegetarians with no loss of flavor. It is also incredibly easy to prepare, because you don’t have to presoak the legumes or saute the vegetables.

2 cups dried white beans, rinsed (preferably cannellini, but navy also are good)
1 carrot, chopped coarsely
1 bulb fennel, cut in half crosswise then sliced thin
1/2 white onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, crushed
1 sprig fresh rosemary
1 sprig of fresh sage
6 cups chicken or vegetable broth
2 tablespoons Pernod, anisette or other licorice-flavored liqueur (optional)

Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

Optional garnishes:
Thin slivers of prosciutto di Parma
Freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Chopped fresh sage leaves

Place all the ingredients in the slow cooker. Cover, turn on low, and cook for 10 hours. Adjust seasonings. Serve in bowls sprinkled with prosciutto, chopped fresh sage leaves and parmesan, if desired.

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