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Cannellini and Kale Soup

Thyme, garlic, and a bay leaf are simmered in water to create a flavorful broth that's low in calories. Frying garlic creates crunchy chips and a tasty oil to drizzle on top.

  • prep: 25 mins
    total time: 12 hours
  • servings: 6

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Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 1 medium carrot, chopped
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced, plus 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
  • Scant 1/4 teaspoon crushed red-pepper flakes
  • 12 ounces cannellini beans (2 cups), picked through and soaked overnight
  • 6 cups water
  • 1 dried bay leaf
  • 8 ounces Tuscan kale (lacinato kale), stems and center ribs removed, leaves sliced crosswise 1/2 inch thick

Cook's Note

Pureed cannellini beans give this soup a velvety texture, canceling out the need for heavy cream.

Directions

  1. Step 1

    Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a medium Dutch oven or a large pot over medium heat. Cook onions and carrot until just softened, about 5 minutes. Season with 2 1/2 teaspoons salt. Stir in minced garlic, thyme, and red-pepper flakes. Cook for 1 minute.

  2. Step 2

    Drain and rinse cannellini beans. Add to Dutch oven with water and bay leaf. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low. Simmer, covered, until beans are tender, about 45 minutes. Let cool slightly. Discard bay leaf.

  3. Step 3

    Working in batches, puree soup in a blender until smooth, transferring it to a clean pot as you work. (For safety, remove cap from hole in lid, and cover with a dish towel to prevent spattering.)

  4. Step 4

    Bring soup to a simmer. Stir in kale and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Simmer until kale is tender, about 15 minutes.

  5. Step 5

    Meanwhile, heat remaining 2 tablespoons oil in a small skillet over medium-low heat. Cook sliced garlic, stirring often, until crisp and golden, 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer garlic to a plate using a slotted spoon. Reserve garlic oil.

  6. Step 6

    Divide soup among 6 bowls. Garnish with garlic chips, and drizzle with garlic oil.

Source
Martha Stewart Living, October 2011

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Reviews (5)

  • 25 Apr, 2013

    I made this with the dried beans and with the canned beans. I found a cannelini that didn't have salt added in the Italian food section of my supermarket. The recipe that was printed in the magazine had thyme seasoned croutons that were served in the soup instead of the garlic. The croutons, I think, are essential. I've made it without and it's never been quite as good. I used 2 14 oz cans of cannelini for 12 oz of dried beans. This is one of my favorite summer soups before seared tuna.

  • 23 Apr, 2013

    I used canned beans and only cut back the water by 1 cup. I would suggest cutting the salt in half when using canned beans or else it's pretty overpowering. You can always add at the end but you can't take it out!

    I decided against the fried garlic and went with hommade croutons

  • 15 Mar, 2013

    Wish someone would answer Donnna510. Canned beans would make this alot easier.

  • 13 Oct, 2012

    How many cups of canned white beans can I exchange for the 12 ounces of dry beans?

  • 12 Aug, 2012

    This was simply excellent! I can't digest white beans, so I used red kidney beans, and if you don't mind a darker soup, it is simply delicious. I've always been weary of soup recipes calling for what seems like too much water, but this one gets all its thickness and taste from the beans, kale and garlic. The last step : garlic chips and oil drizzle, really does bring a huge kick to the end result. I can't wait to eat this again tomorrow at lunch time!