Mia and I began to plan Thanksgiving this week. I say began because we got a bit distracted, as we tend to do, and ended up re-seasoning her cast iron skillet and riffling through old recipes. At least we’ve started the process. This year there is a hitch in our get-along as the UT vs. A&M game has moved to Thanksgiving Day. Talk about calling an audible on our turkey day traditions! So, Mia and I have a little more planning to do this year figuring out how to work in a turkey and football.
While we were sitting around her kitchen table looking through cookbooks and all her tried and true recipes, Mia disappeared for a minute and came back with a container of white bean soup. She told me I needed to take it home and have it for lunch. Isn’t that just like a mother? I’m glad I listened to her this time, this white bean soup is delicious.
The recipe comes from The Gourmet Slow Cooker a book Mia’s BFF gave her recently.
White Bean Soup
2 cups dried white beans
6 – 8 cups water or chicken stock
2 Tbs olive oil
1 yellow onion, finely chopped
3 carrots, peeled and finely chopped
3 celery stalks, finely chopped
2 large garlic cloves, minced
1 ham bone
1 (14 1/2 oz) can crushed tomatoes
2 sprigs oregano, coarsely chopped
1 cup packed spinach leaves
1 Tbs salt
1/4 cup chopped parsley for garnish
Rinse and sort through the beans. Place them in the slow cooker and add enough water to cover. Cover and cook on high for 2 hours, until the beans begin to soften. Or, soak the beans with water to cover overnight, then drain, rinse, and transfer to the slow cooker. Add the water to cover.
Heat a large saute pan over medium-high heat and add the oil. Add the onion, carrots, celery, garlic and saute, stirring frequently for 10 minutes or until lightly browned. Add the vegetables and ham bone to the beans in the slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for 6 – 8 hours, until the beans are tender.
Just before serving, stir in tomatoes, oregano, spinach and salt. Garnish with parsley.
Cooks note: I added a spoonful of grated parmesan and a dash of cholula to my bowl just to kick it up a notch.
What a great recipe for the slow cooker. Sounds great, I love white beans.
That looks so yummy. I make a lot of bean soups too. But I am always afraid to use dried beans. Are they hard to master? They are certainly cheaper.
Thanks so much for stopping by my site today and helping with my project.
to ellyn: white beans are very easy to deal with. when I married 41 years ago beans were on my short list of cooking skills. I had grown up with red beans and rice. They are still on my short list and great fun to experiment with in the way of adding flavor or other veggies to the pot. The have lots of fiber and make just about anything yummy. Beans are one of the oldest forms of food and are just too simple to use. Get rid of that fear and go for it! You’ll be adding more to that pot of beans in no time. Don’t forget the cornbread!
Listen to Mia, folks. Dried beans are super easy, they just require a bit more planning as you either need to soak them over night or gently simmer them in water just to cover for a couple hours. Always rinse dry beans and pick out any ugly ones. Other than that if you can buy dry beans in bulk you are lucky as they are cheap, hearty and nutritious!