Gluten – Free Escarole and Bean Soup
Well, it’s coming…cold weather will soon be upon us!! That chill in the air makes us all want some warming meals to comfort us. And in our family, we’re big SOUP LOVERS! So, you’ll probably be seeing a lot of that on the blog.
I first had this soup years ago in an Italian restaurant with my dear friend, Debbie, and as I sat there loving every spoonful, I deciphered what the ingredients were, and that same week I prepared it at home. And it’s been a regular dish for us since then. I hope you’ll try it…it’s simple to make and healthy to boot!
This recipe contains a small amount of Prosciutto ( only 1 slice, diced) but if you want to eliminate it, please do so. It still tastes just great. If you’re making it with the Prosciutto, just have the deli man slice a couple of slices a little bit thicker than the regular cold-cut slice, and you’re all set. It actually weighed 1/5 lb. and I had 2 slices. Only use one for this and save the other slice for another recipe.
4 tbsp. Butter ( or substitute EVOO if you like)
1 slice Prosciutto, diced.
2 Scallions, sliced thin, using from the bulb to half way up green end2 Garlic Cloves, diced
2 Carrots, peeled and diced
2 cans Gluten Free Chicken Broth ( you’ll need about 28 oz. if buying the boxed broth)
2 cups Water
1 Escarole head-Fresh escarole, chop off & discard the last inch near the root, and then wash leaves well to eliminate sand. Then rough chop leaves.
2 cans Cannelini Beans, drained of canning liquid.
Salt & Pepper to taste
2 tbsp Parsley- I use fresh parsley and chop into small pieces
½ teas Thyme
1 Bay Leaf ( leave it whole, we’ll remove it when done, before serving)
2 tbsp. Tomato Paste. I love the tube of concentrated paste sold in markets. Use whenever you need just a taste of tomato, and store in fridge.
First thing to do is to cut and wash the escarole. I did that and then let it all soak in a large bowl of clear water while preparing the soup. That way, any sand is sure to be removed. Swirl the leaves around in that water.
Start dicing the scallions and garlic, set aside.
Peel and dice the carrots. Set aside for a few minutes.
In a large soup pot on low heat, melt the butter or heat the EVOO. Saute the Prosciutto, if adding this, and when slightly browned,
Add the scallions, garlic and saute for about 2 minutes. Keep watching them. Don’t let burn.
Add the carrots and allow these 3 things to blend over the low heat for approximately 6 minutes.
Add the broth, water and spices. Allow to simmer for 30 minutes.
Lastly, add the beans, the washed & chopped escarole, and tomato paste. Simmer for an additional 20 minutes. Remove the bay leaf and discard.
Here’s a close-up:
I enjoy this with some grated Italian cheese, such as Romano or Parmesan sprinkled liberally on top when plated.
Let me hear from you if this appeals to you or after you’ve prepared it.
We love it here and hope you do as well.