Jennifer’s Mixed Bean Soup
Yep, the rain is here. It’s time to make soup.
My friend Jennifer came over for coffee a few months ago and shared this recipe with me, but it was spring, and I wasn’t feeling soup-y. It sat, pinned by a magnet to my fridge until last week when I pulled it down, pulled out my giant stock pot, and got to work.
Now, I should mention that Jennifer is a horticulturalist, and an avid gardener. So I love that this soup is chock full of vegetables, or simply whatever you can glean from your garden at the beginning of October.
This is everything you want in the fall. Warm, comforting, rich with broth and hearty beans and vegetables. It’s vegan to boot, and it makes enough to serve a small army. Mine ended up so thick, that it’s more like a concentrate! I froze it, but when I take it out, I can easily just add a little water to it if I feel like it’s too thick.
Jennifer’s Mixed Bean Soup (Vegan)
- 2 cups mixed dried beans, soaked overnight. If you’re in a terrible rush (with soup you should never be in a terrible rush!), you can use canned.
- 1 can diced tomatoes
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 1 stalk celery, diced (I didn’t have any, so I substituted a half a fennel bulb I had in the fridge)
- 2 cloves garlic (or more if you like it garlicky)
- 1 carrot or parsnip, peeled and cut in chunks
- 1 potato or yam, peeled and cut in largish chunks
- 1/4-1/2 cup homemade pesto
- 1 cup wine
- fresh or dried herbs to taste: I used a large sprig of rosemary and one of sage
- “Spike” or “Mrs. Dash” to taste
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1-2 litres vegetable stock
- On medium heat, go a few turns around the stock pot with olive oil, about 2 tbsps. Add the onion and saute lightly for about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and stir until fragrant.
- Add the herbs and salt and pepper, and stir well.
- Next, add the vegetables, and saute for a few minutes to allow them just to soften a little on the outside.
- Next, add the can of tomatoes and pesto. Stir well and let everything mix and mingle for about 5 minutes or so.
- Add the beans and stir. Cover everything with stock, and allow to come to a boil. Simmer on the back of the stove, stirring occasionally, and adding extra stock if it gets too thick.
- Let simmer for about 40 minutes to an hour. You could also this step in the slow cooker. Test the large chunk vegetables and especially the beans for doneness. If they are still tough, add more stock and cook a little longer until they are tender.
- Add the wine and cook about 10 minutes more. Taste for seasoning, adjust seasoning, and serve.
- Freeze the extra for the cold weather to come, or to share with a friend (like Jennifer!).