And you sit down to eat. The first bite is filled with sagey goodness, and the luscious thickness of the beans is comforting on a cold January night. The carrots add a touch of sweetness, and the soup as a whole has a complex flavor that belies the simple ingredients. Both you and your husband enjoy the warmth of the easy yet filling Tuscan Bean Soup.
As the leftovers sit in the fridge, they do absorb a fair amount of liquid. I found that if I wanted to enjoy them as soup, then I had to add water or broth. But, I also found the drier leftover soup made an excellent quesadilla filling. Just throwing that out there, if you're feeling adventurous.
Tuscan Bean Soup
Moosewood Daily Special
2 c. diced onions (about 1 large)
1 c. peeled and diced carrots (2-3 medium)
4 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
1 T. olive oil
15 large fresh sage leaves (or other herbs)
6 c. cooked pinto, Roman, or small red or white beans*
3-4 c. vegetable stock, bean-cooking liquid, or water
salt and pepper to taste
*Beans: 3 15 or 16 oz. cans, undrained. Or, 2 c. dried beans yields about 6 c. cooked.
In a soup pot, saute the onions, carrots, and garlic in the olive oil on medium-low heat until the onions are translucent and the carrots are tender, about 10 minutes. Stack the sage leaves and cut them crosswise into thin strips. Stir the sage into the vegetables. Add the cooked beans and 3 c. of the stock or other liquid. Continue to cook on medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the soup is hot and simmering, 5 to 10 minutes.
Carefully ladle about 3 c. of the soup into a blender and puree into smooth. Stir the puree back into the soup. (Using an immersion blender sparingly also works.) If you wish, add more liquid for a less thick consistency. Add salt and pepper to taste. If necessary, gently reheat the soup. Serve hot.