I’ve been thinking about this soup for a while, but every time I got around to making it, I either didn’t have the right ingredients, or wasn’t in the mood for soup. That’s the rub of planning your week’s meals on Sunday: sometimes, on Thursday, you just have to call an audible and boil some pasta.
Can you see me in the spoon? I can!
Anyway, jokes on me because this soup is incredible. It’s creamy without actually adding cream, its unbelievably flavorful, and so very satisfying. Don’t be like me; don’t put this soup on the back burner (puns!).
It starts with chopped onions in a large pot. Let them sweat it out.
Meanwhile, chop the rest of your vegetables: garlic, carrot, celery. The things soups are made of.
All the vegetables are added to the pot and allowed to cook for a couple of minutes.
When they are softened but not browned, add the garlic and a whole bunch of chopped sage. Sage is one of my favorite herbs–it simultaneously reminds me of thanksgiving, mushroom risotto, and the woods. And it feels like velvet. I love the stuff.
After all the aromatics and vegetables have cooked for a while, season with salt and pepper then add two cans of drained and rinsed white beans, along with 6 cups of chicken stock.
Bring this to a boil then reduce the heat to simmer and let it cook on low for at least an hour.
Here’s a wide angle shot for you–notice the iPad for recipe reading. On the stove. Because I don’t have a counter. Are you worried about me and my electronics? I am.
When the soup has been simmering for an hour, grab your newest kitchen toy, the amazing and ever-handy immersion blender, and blend the soup.
Isn’t that cool? It’s like a power tool, but for soups. In reality just saves me from having to clean my blender, which is, by far, my least favorite thing to clean. I love it! But if you don’t have one, you can use a regular blender and blend the soup in batches until it’s creamy and smooth.
Once the desired consistency has been reached, finish the soup off with some freshly squeezed lemon juice. This may sound strange, but this is key, people. It adds zing and balance and really takes this soup from good to wow.
Ladle the soup into bowls and top with some crispy bacon (or prosciutto, like the original recipe called for. I had bacon already cooked from brunch the day before, thus, the bacon). Or, if your of the vegetarian persuasion, leave the meat out and enjoy as is!
Like I said before, I was shocked by how tasty this was. I mean, it looks tasty, and sounds tasty, but I couldn’t believe how packed with flavor it was. I tend to think creamy soups are too heavy, and lean more towards broth-based soups, but this recipe, because of its lack of actual cream, creates a creamy soup that is really light.
The texture is fantastic, and the salty, crispy bacon on top adds a depth of flavor and texture that is divine. Bacon will do that, almost every time.
In these last few crisp Spring days, enjoy a bowl of soup. This bowl of soup. I promise you’ll enjoy it!
Here’s the recipe:
Creamy White Bean Soup
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 2 stalks celery, diced
- 2 carrots, diced
- 4-5 large sage leaves, chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 6 cups chicken stock
- 2 15-ounce cans white cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
- salt and pepper
- 2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 8 Slices bacon, cooked and drained, then crumbled
- In a large dutch oven, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onion and cook for 3 minutes. Add celery and carrots and cook for 3 minutes more, until beginning to soften. Add garlic and chopped sage and cook for 1 minute.
- Add drained beans and stock and season with salt and pepper. Increase heat and bring mixture to a boil, then reduce heat to simmer and let simmer, uncovered, for at least an hour.
- Finish the soup by pureeing it with either an immersion blender or a regular blender, in batches. The soup should be completely creamy. Stir in lemon juice, adding more if needed. Taste for seasoning and adjust accordingly.
- To serve, ladle into bowls and top with crumbled bacon.