It’s cold, and it’s snowing finally. This calls for soup, my most favorite food category in the world! I’m
Plus, since I have been a bad girl and have eaten too many chocolates, cheese and chips, I better make my soup a healthy one.
I’m thinking Italian, after my Italian companion and I recently reminisced about our trip 2 summers ago.
Bring on the Tuscan White Bean Soup with Swiss Chard!
1 bunch Swiss chard (or other dark leafy green such as kale)
1 to 2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
2 ribs celery, diced
1 large carrot, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
4 slices finely chopped prosciutto
1 tablespoon chopped rosemary (divided)
1 tablespoon thyme leaves (divided)
1/2 tsp. red pepper flakes (optional)
1 bay leaf
3 cans white (cannellini) beans, drained and rinsed
1 32-ounce box low-sodium chicken broth (about 4 cups)
1 Parmesan rind
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Splash of balsamic vinegar (about 1 teaspoon)
Cut off the tough ends of the chard and rinse the greens thoroughly. Shake or pat dry and tear into bite-size pieces. Set aside.
Heat the oil over medium-high heat in a large heavy-bottomed pot. Saute the onion, celery, carrot, and garlic for 3 minutes or until the onion is translucent, stirring often. Add the prosciutto, HALF the herbs, the red pepper flakes (if you choose), and bay leaf and saute for another 3 minutes until fragrant. Stir in the beans and saute for another minute or two. Pour in the chicken broth, toss in the Parmesan rind, and bring to a boil.
Reduce heat to low and simmer for 30 minutes or until thickened, stirring occasionally. Stir in the Swiss chard and cook over low heat for 2-3 minutes or until the greens have wilted. Season with salt, pepper, the other half of the herbs, and a splash of balsamic vinegar. Remove the Parmesan rind before serving (if you can find it!).
Serve with grated Parmesan cheese and warm crusty bread.