Tuesday, September 13, 2011

White Bean Soup

Soup season is approaching, and this quick, easy and filling soup is a family favorite of mine. My version is just scribbled down on a notecard, so I have no idea from what source I originally got it. I suspect it probably came from either a magazine or our local paper, but a quick search of Google brought me many variations on this recipe.

As I mentioned in my post on leftovers, whenever I use a somewhat out of the ordinary ingredient, I try to find other recipes employing it so that I can use it up. So - keep an eye out this week because I'll be posting another recipe to use up the rest of the pancetta needed for this one!

Easy White Bean Soup

6 oz. pancetta, cut into 1 inch cubes
2T extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for serving
1 small onion(yellow or white onion - don't use red or sweet onions), diced medium
3 medium garlic cloves, minced
salt and black pepper
4 cans (15 1/2 oz each) cannellini or great northern beans, drained and rinsed
3 1/2 cups water
1 sprig fresh rosemary or dried rosemary to taste
Balsamic vinegar, for serving (optional)

1. IN large Dutch oven, cook pancetta over medium heat until just golden, about 8-10 minutes. Remove about half of the pancetta and either discard, or save to flavor salads, vegetables, etc...

2. Add oil to pot with remaining pancetta. Add onion and cook, stirring occasionally until softened, 5-6 minutes. Stir in garlic and cook 30 seconds until fragrant.

3. Add beans, 1/2 tsp. salt and water to pot. Increase to medium-high and bring to simmer.

4.Submerge the rosemary in soup liquid. Cover pot tightly and let it stand off heat 15-20 minutes.

5. When serving, this tastes good with a small(no more than 1 tsp.) swirl of extra-virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar added to the top of the bowl of soup.



  1. Oooh, this looks yummy!! Soup season for us is getting here quickly. I think the high for us on Thursday of this week is only 64. I am absolutely thrilled and cannot wait to make a big ole batch of something warm! Thanks for sharing!

  2. I'd love to make this (we could use some more legumes in our diet!) but what in the world is pancetta? Thanks for sharing!

  3. Jacinda - Pancetta is basically Italian bacon. Unlike a lot of American bacon, it's not smoked, though. Not every grocery has it, so if I can't find it, I will often use Canadian bacon or even ham. Hope this helps!

  4. MMM... sounds delicious. I love soup season. Makes me smile just thinking about it! :)

  5. Soups are wonderful. Liquid cassaroles. You throw a bunch of stuff in and get something great to come out :-)